What Can a Driverless Car Offer to You?


The hype of a driverless or autonomous car has seen a major surge lately. Although the idea cannot be said new because people were already talking about the driverless car technology in the 1930s during the New York’s World Fair, the recent success of a number of prototypes helps reinvigorate the enthusiasm to produce a working consumer-grade robotic car. This robotic vehicle, which so far has been more a part of science fiction, now starts to appear in its true and functional form. What can this futuristic car offer to you? Here are some possible benefits that you can reap when the robotic car finally becomes mainstream transport.

Coast-to-Coast Hassle-Free Traveling

A long ride is both tiring and risky. It requires stamina, concentration, and experience. If you board on a driverless car, everything will certainly be different. An automatic robotic car can escort you from places to places with no hassle, even if you want to travel from coast to coast. For your information, this feat is no longer imaginary because, in 2015, Delphi’s automatic Audi Roadrunner had actually accomplished the longest trip that a driverless car ever made. The car successfully completed a trip from San Francisco, navigated across 15 states, and finally reached New York in only nine days. Although the driver still sat behind the wheel, because the DMV regulation required so, 99 percent of the trip was accomplished driverless. The same long driverless trip had also been accomplished in France when a distance of 375 miles is covered by a robotic car with no human involvement.

Safer Ride, More Convenient Trip, and Smoother Traffic

One problem that all human drivers still cannot overcome is a slow response. They are often unable to hit the brake timely when they encounter obstacles and when they get the clearance, there is often one or two-second delay before they start to step on the gas. This slow response is often the culprit of various traffic accidents and traffic jams. A study and experiment that were recently conducted by the University of Cambridge and presented at the International Conference on Robotics and Automation (ICRA) showed that car automation can increase traffic safety, convenience, and smoothness by 35 percent. With less braking and accelerating, traffic jam frequency can be minimized and fuel consumption can be made more efficient.

Better Driving Skill and Experience

Will a self-driving car make you a lazy and incompetent driver? NVIDIA Corporation’s latest AI driving technology actually proves the opposite. The company recently introduced a new AI (Artificial Intelligence) co-pilot system that assists you when you are driving. There are various types of assistance that this robotic co-pilot offers. To start with, this system is connected to all external cameras that practically eliminate blind spots around your car. It is also integrated with the internal camera that sees you and learns your behavior. This AI system is capable to drive the car in autopilot mode. When you are behind the wheel, it will provide you with driving assistance based on the data that it collects to make you a better driver.

No DUI Problem

Driving under drug influence and driving while intoxicated will no longer a serious issue when people don’t have to drive their own car. It is estimated that by 2030, 10 percent of all vehicles on roads will be autonomous and by 2050, most cars will have an automatic driving system integrated into them. When this estimation becomes true, no one has to worry anymore about drunk drivers who endanger both themselves and people on and around the road.

No Human Error Problem

The statistics show that 90 percent of accidents that occur on city roads are caused by human error. When the source of this error is eliminated by introducing a robotic driver that is error-proof, the frequency of accidents can be reduced greatly. The introduction of a driverless car is expected to make the roads safer for everyone.

Some Concerns

Despite the many advantages that a robotic car offers to us, there are still some concerns that need to be addressed, especially today. The technology that is used by the automatic cars today is not yet fully perfected. Fatal accidents that occur due to the malfunctioning system, such as Tesla Autopilot that doesn’t detect pedestrian and cyclists, still need to be sorted out. The authorities also have yet to trust the technology fully. Some strict regulations are enacted recently to make sure that robotic vehicles don’t kill people or damage properties when they are let loose on the roads. Once all of these problems are solved, a robotic driverless car will certainly be the king of the road.