Should we expect Self-driving cars in 2016?

Autonomous cars are becoming very popular, thanks to Google and Tesla, soon, or maybe not, this would be a norm.

From statistics, traffic accidents causes over 1.2 million deaths worldwide, about 94% of such accidents involves human error in the US, with humans causing majority of road of accidents, autonomous cars could be the much awaited solution to this, also moving from one place to another in a vehicle would be easier for everyone whether you are old, disabled or can’t drive.

With Auto companies preparing to wow the crowds at the International CES (Consumer Electronic Show) this January with their autonomous capabilities, are we really certain that 2016 is the year of self driving cars? Not everyone agrees.

Automated driving will come step by step. Cars will go from being able to change lanes unaided to avoiding obstacles and by 2020 they will be able to cope with navigating the highway. Fully automated driving will not be ready before 2025
Gerhard Steiger
President of the Bosch Chassis Systems Control division

Using current methods, a highway pilot has to complete several million kilometers’ worth of testing before it can be released for production,” says Steiger. Google on the other hand has been working on series of tests lately, “We’ve self-driven over 1 million miles and are currently out on the streets of Mountain View, California and Austin, Texas” Here’s an example of autonomous driving

Google’s head start in autonomous driving technology is due in part to its maps, also as of December, BMW, Daimler and Audi purchased Nokia’s Here service, Bosch on the other hand has been working in partnership with TomTom in order to create maps for autonomous cars.

Highly automated vehicles rely on environmental information — information that goes beyond what sensors can gather. For instance, they need real-time traffic data on congestion and accidents. This can be achieved only by connecting the vehicle to a server,” Steiger explains. I sure hope we don’t hear cases of server crashes.

An autonomous car is a good idea but first things first, rules have to be made, that been said, The federal government has expressed some willingness to catch up on autonomous rules, rules however made by California’s Department of Motor Vehicles didn’t favor Google, that which declared a licensed driver must be present in the front seat at all times, Google expressed how upset they were about it in a statement;

In developing vehicles that can take anyone from A to B at the push of a button, we’re hoping to transform mobility for millions of people, whether by reducing the 94 percent of accidents caused by human error or bringing everyday destinations within reach of those who might otherwise be excluded by their inability to drive a car. Safety is our highest priority and primary motivator as we do this. We’re gravely disappointed that California is already writing a ceiling on the potential for fully self-driving cars to help all of us who live here
Google’s self-driving car unit

California DMV also made note that drivers must pass similar certification requirements, related to those in the current testing phase and also made it clear that if an accident happens, the driver to be blamed at all times, Volvo was one of the first car companies to accept full responsibility for driver-less car accidents, it joins Google who has already claimed to take such responsibility. These rules though are subject to change “Any of this stuff can be changed down the line,” said Jaime Garza, a spokesman for the California DMV. “The regulations are in draft form and they will evolve as we get input.”

Currently a total of 11 manufacturers are permitted to test self-driving cars in the state, of these are Google, Tesla and Ford.

What do you think about self driving cars? In countries that careless about traffic laws i wonder how this would work out. Let us know in comments about what you think.

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