Uber Bringing Self-Driving Cars To Washington, D.C.

The marketing of self-driving cars is moving to the nation’s capital.

Following the introduction of autonomous cars in Dallas, Pittsburgh, San Francisco and Toronto, Uber Advanced Technology group is bringing its self-driving vehicles to Washington, D.C., starting today.

The cars will initially be operated in manual driving mode for data collection.

“A Mission Specialist, a specially trained vehicle operator, will maintain control of the vehicle at all times,” Danielle Burr, head of Under Federal Affairs, stated in a blog post.

The manual data collection is to develop high-definition maps to be used for Uber’s self-driving system, capture scenarios to simulate and incorporate into on-track testing and identify key characteristics in a new city.

The more recent automotive trend is to push ahead with additional in-car connectivity well ahead of fully autonomous vehicles, which face challenging technological issues and a lack of public desire.

Based on recent moves, notably at CES, the focus now is more on developing technology to assist drivers rather than to replace them.

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