As the innovation and development of technology are increasing, improvements in Vehicles and transportation are also rising to new heights. Many companies have also started launching electric vehicles that will create a huge impact in the field of automobiles.
Similarly, artificial intelligence is also growing quickly that our computers and other devices are becoming so smart that it can perform many different tasks at the same time. Electric power vehicles (EV) will be a breakthrough in our current automotive industry. It can solve the major problems that are currently affected by traditional vehicles like pollution.
Ok, EV is going to be our future vehicles in a few years but, what’s next? How is AI going to merge with our vehicles in the future?
Almost a decade has passed, since the hype among the people about self-driving cars is still going on. Not even a single company has launched a public centric self-driving car till now. So, where is it? Why are self-driving cars taking so long? when is it taking over? Its pros and cons, etc…
These are the frequently asked questions regarding self-driving cars. Here are the answers and explanations about it…
What are self-driving cars?
Self-driving cars are the vehicle that uses sensors to understand it’s surrounding area and make decisions through AI for the movement without any human interaction. Basically, it is a car that doesn’t require a driver for handling the steering, it performs actions using automated computer programs.
It is also known as autonomous vehicles, driverless cars or robotic cars where the vehicles can sense its surrounding itself.
Lidar, radar, GPS, sonar and many advanced sensors are used to detect the area and various data is provided to learn about our vehicles and nearby objects. It uses computer vision to detect and recognize objects.
Benefits and drawbacks of driverless cars
As autonomous cars grow towards becoming a more realistic model of transportation, there are a lot of new possibilities and applications for it. However, there are downsides as well.
So, lets look at the major pro’s and con’s of self driving cars
1. Reducing accident rates and traffic jams
Most of the accident presently occurs due to some sort of human error, it can be either distraction, bad decision making, or impaired driving (drink and drive case). In the case of self-driving cars, they will have fast reaction time and it will have the ability to communicate with other self-driving cars which could help to avoid accidents and also reduce traffic.
2. Solving parking-related issues
If you are using self-driving cars, parking would be less of an inconvenience. Whether you are in a huge parking slot or looking for a spot downtown, your cars will drop you off and go find a parking spot of its own. When you are ready, there’s no need to go towards the parking slot to get your car. Schedule it through your phone and it can pick you up from your current location.
3. Speed limits might be raised
By adopting autonomous vehicles, the speed limit of the car can be increased with minimum error rates, proving fewer accidents and reducing traffic jams. It can provide a seamless driving experience to the passengers without any interruptions.
1. Elimination of various jobs
Although many jobs can arise during the emerging period of self-driving cars, it can prove to be a difficult time for many people. As with many other emerging technologies, autonomous vehicles are going to eliminate thousands of jobs. Most of the driving jobs will be wiped out including taxi, cab, and truck drivers. It’s also possible that related fields like car insurance and auto repair could be affected in this process.
2. Self-driving cars will be expensive initially
Hardware and Softwares that are required for functioning and processing of the data are too expensive. After releasing a multiple number of self-driving cars, the prices may come down but they may still be more expensive than traditional cars. This also means that renting cars would be a better option than owning it.
3. Cyberattacks and privacy issues may increase
One of the biggest concerns about self-driving cars is vulnerability. Most of the passenger personal data, credit card info is accessed and collected by the computer for security reasons. But this may also backfire, Cyber threats will be increased, hackers can obtain control over the vehicles and steal the data or even cause criminal activities such as accidents.
Read more: Pros and cons of driverless vehicles.
Future of self-driving cars
Why are self driving cars taking so long?
Artificial intelligence and sensors used in self-driving cars are not matured enough that it can keep up with highly dense real-time traffic scenarios. The hype about self-driving cars is from 2004 and it was believed that the self-driving cars would arrive in a few years, but it is easier said than done.
Gary Silberg, a partner at KPMG says that “The hype of self-driving cars got ahead of the reality, but honestly, it’s gone way faster than I would have ever believed.”
“I mean, it’s literally like putting somebody on the moon. It’s that complex.”
General-purpose self-driving cars are hard to develop. Softwares have to work out a lot of really tricky questions and provide the information from its sensors into a command to the steering and paddle. Dispute so much developed AI and money that is invested in these vehicles, there are still many challenges.
First one is perception stage: Analyzing it’s surrounding objects accurately.
Second, the prediction stage: Planning to move or take the turn by predicting the movement of the nearby vehicles.
As artificial intelligence and machine learning evolve, solving complex problems will become much easier in the future, and then true self-driving cars will be available to the public.
By when self driving cars will take over?
There have been a huge hype and many articles which says self-driving cars are coming soon at least from a decade and they are suggesting that we are at its peak. But it is far from reality, to make a 100% self-driving car that can be used by public consumers, it would take more than 5 to 10 years from now. There are some driverless cars which might be launched in the coming years but it will be only for some specific purpose like long halt trucks and cabs, taxi for some developed areas with fewer vehicles, medicines. Delivery of medicines and groceries might also be done using self-driving cars to avoid threats like coronavirus in the future.
Until Electric vehicles are not out in the market and replaced by current gas vehicles, self-driving cars will not be a reality. As autonomous vehicles mainly depend on computer data processing and sensors, electricity will be better to charge the vehicles and also the same power can be used to power up the engine, and the sensors in the vehicle. If we create a self-driving electric vehicle, major problems in this world can be solved. There will be no pollution, less traffic, human power, and risk will be reduced, an unlimited source of energy (electricity compared to petrol/diesel).
How self-driving cars will impact the world?
By looking at the recent approach by companies like Google, Tesla, we can expect that self-driving technology will solve many issues majorly prevent accidents, save many lives, make our life faster.
It will increase productivity like an automatic search for the parking areas, searching the fastest way to move to the destination and more.
Are self driving cars safe compared to regular cars?
If we look into the future, the answer is Yes. Self-driving cars will be far more safer and reliable than human drivers in the future. As of now, it’s not safe, the main reason behind this is safety or driverless cars. Most of the public believes that it is unsafe to travel in a non-driver car and it is true. Self-driving technology has not gone to such an extent that it is 100% reliable. As the development of AI and upgraded sensors are made by the companies, it will be possible that we will only see driverless cars everywhere in the world.
Self-driving cars are the emerging technology that will be a reality in the future, but if you talk about the present, it has a long way to go probably 10 years to completely get around the world. The development is still in progress. Initially, it will be launched in specific neighborhood areas for delivery purposes, less distant passenger taxis, and other small applications.
According to my thoughts, the hype and excitement should be for Electric vehicles currently. Many companies are launching e-vehicles for the recent few years. Everyone should adopt electric vehicles to reduce the use of non-renewable sources (petrol and diesel). This is the only way we can move towards the future.😁