Self-driving cars and self-driving technology are still very experimental, and it will be at least a year or two until we start even seeing some commercial self-driving cars on the street. As you probably know by now, Google has been testing self-driving cars for the past few years, and at I/O 2016 behind a small roped off area, Google displayed the car that made everyone excited.
Now the circular shape isn’t a fashion statement by any means, it’s actually a functional design that lets the sensors around the car be able to see everything instead of a small window in the front, back, and sides of the car. This helps because the car can have a better understanding of your surrounding and prevent mistakes that could have been made, like not seeing a vehicle in a spot that wouldn’t be visible if it was a human that was sitting in the driver seat. Before this model of the car, Google partnered up with Lexus to modify a Lexus SUV and make a more practical car self-driving, since the prototype that Google showed off at I/O 2016 is an electrical two seater.
On the inside, the car looks quite comfortable, there’s a big bin which appears that it will be for storage and a display under the front window, and 2 displays that are mounted near the doors. These displays will most likely be your main dashboard and means of controlling the car. There are also a few physical buttons and dials in between the 2 seats, these will probably be controls for things like volume, heat, and air conditioning.
Of course, to self-driving there are multiple advantages and those are quite important. Preventing collisions, predicting weather conditions and leading to knowing where to drive and where not to. All these things are primarily focusing on the safety of the passengers but comfort is relevant as well. Google is also going to incorporate their new GPS systems. There will also be the standard pedals where you would expect to find them on a regular car for emergencies.
Google has been in self-driving game longer than anyone, and has been doing it the best so far, it’s also exciting to see that someday we will be able to control our cars with our smartphones to execute commands such as pre-heat the car when it’s cold, or do the opposite when it’s warm. Overall Google’s prototype is very impressive but there is always room for improvement.