Chinese tech giant Baidu has launched what is billed as the country’s first commercial autonomous vehicle service where the users can hail a robotaxi via an app. The important thing to note here is that these robotaxis will not have a safety driver behind the steering wheel to intervene. Reportedly, the Apollo Go Robotaxi service will shuttle the visitors attending the 2022 Beijing Winter Olympics.
Hailing an Apollo Robotaxi is nothing different compared to any other app-based ride-sharing service that you might have already used. Via the Apollo Go app, users can locate a robotaxi in their vicinity and hail a driverless ride. Apparently, the app also has a remote honking feature that makes it a little bit easier to locate the car. Once the car arrives, the users can unlock the car via the app and are required to scan QR and health codes to start the journey.
Upon boarding the vehicle, the system will go through a series of checks to ensure that seat belts are fastened, the doors are shut, and all the passenger safety protocols are met, and only then the journey begins. The 5G-enabled robotaxi can be remotely controlled by human operators in case of an emergency.
Source: Baidu via PR Newswire
Baidu began pilot tests of Apollo Robotaxis last year. Watch the video below.