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Fully autonomous driving trials coming to California

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October 7, 2016

by

Mark Thomas

California has passed legislation that will allow autonomous cars – without a test driver – to be trialed on public roads. The Google self-driving cars just passed the 2-million mile mark this week and are a regular sight in Silicon Valley. Even though the Google cars don’t have a steering wheel or a gas or brake pedal, there is always a test ‘driver’ inside the vehicle.

The newly approved trials will be among the first in the nation that allow cars without drivers on the road. This bills allows for two specific trials, but additional legislation is under review to define the application and permitting process to allow for more driverless trials.

The test cars are required to have two-way communications between a person and the vehicle, so passengers have immediate access to speak to someone. The trial vehicles will also be limited to 35 miles per hour.

With this news, it’s clear that connected cars are now at the intersection of two very powerful disruptions: autonomous driving, which is happening faster than most people had imagined, and transportation-as-a-service.

In a few years we’ll likely be subscribing to a transportation service where driverless vehicles pick us up and deliver us to our destination. Without the need for a driver, the cost of offering these services is anticipated to decrease dramatically. Some estimate that eliminating the driver would save 90 percent of the cost of offering a ride. This could decrease the price per mile of a ride to a point where it’s more economical to pay for transportation-as-a-service rather than own a vehicle. Much like subscribing to a music streaming service rather than purchasing songs or albums, we will see people rejecting vehicle ownership for the convenience and savings of a transportation service.

In order for these disruptions to be successful, managing the connectivity of these vehicles is paramount. And this is where IoT platforms come into play. Cisco Jasper Control Center is the leading global IoT connectivity management platform, and it is used by more connected car manufacturers than any other platform.

While the industry talks about the future of connected transportation, here at Cisco Jasper we’ve been enabling real connected car innovation for more than a decade. Learn more about how Real IoT – IoT that is changing the way businesses operate today – is driving the automotive industry forward at www.jasper.com/connectedcar.

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