Google reveals self-driving car prototype

December 29, 2014
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If everything goes smoothly, we may see these hitting the roads in early 2020.

Google’s vision for a self-driving car is almost becoming reality. On Monday, December 22, 2014, the Internet giant unveiled the first prototype of its self-driving, or driverless car.

It doesn’t look much different from the model Google revealed earlier this May; the difference though, is that this one is fully functional. Yes, it actually works.

There are a few notable cosmetic changes, including a more defined, polished casing for the equipment on the roof of the car. This will enable communication tobe smoother as the software interacts with the visuals of the road ahead.

While these types of vehicles will not be publically available for years to come, it still is a revolutionary mark for the automobile and technology industry.

Google also noted that the company plans to use manual controls, like gas and brake pedals, while it tests the cars, in order to comply with California DMV rules.

Although Google is working on its own vehicle prototypes, it is looking to potentially partner with auto manufacturers to bring self-driving cars to the market within the next five years. If everything goes smoothly, we may see these hitting the roads in early 2020.

Nonetheless, it has been a long road. The project was originally announced in 2010 and led to the Google X research and development lab. Besides innovation, Google is working on this special project, along with its popular Google Glass project, to diversify its revenue streams.

However, Google is still being surrounded by pessimism. Their stock performance this year, has been subpar to say the least. The stock is down 8% from the start of the year while New York’s S&P 500 index is up 12%. In addition, Facebook is up 46%. It only makes sense to have a comparison model and unfortunately for Google, Facebook is the only prominent tech giant that can be used in this relative side-by-side glance.

Although Google’s financial figures are mediocre for this year, it will definitely be a hot item in the coming years. It will still continue to bring in revenue through Youtube, Google Glass, Google Adwords, and various other outlets. In addition, Google is responding to criticism for its search engine policies and striving to be the unanimous online player for anything related to search. In short, Google is here to stay.

 

st1229-03-1 Jonathan Mak
Whitney High School 12th Grade

One Comment

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    November 27, 2017 at 1:32 PM

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