It’s not quite official, and neither Google nor Ford will confirm or deny the report, but Yahoo!Autos is reporting that the two companies are creating a joint venture to develop self-driving cars.
Yahoo says the collaboration will be officially announced at the Consumer Electronics Show next month, and it honestly seems like a logical partnership in the grand scheme of things.
Ford is an established automaker and Google is one of the most established companies in the still relatively new self-driving car industry.
Ford provides the cars and Google provides its advanced autonomous software, which it has already tested extensively, playing to the strengths of both companies and looking like a match made in heaven from an outsider’s perspective.
Ford and Google have one thing in common that pretty much sets both of them apart from other major companies developing autonomous technology.
Neither one of them is interested in autopilot mode that lets the car drive just some of the time. Nope, both are interested in building fully self-driving cars, with no steering wheel or pedals. Essentially, a SELF-DRIVING CAR in its purest form.
Why you ask? Basically, it all comes down to emergency situations and the question of how to safely transfer control of the self-driving vehicle to the human. By taking the human completely out of the equation like Google and Ford want to do, that gray area can be avoided.
“Right now, there’s no good answer, which is why we’re kind of avoiding that space,” says Dr. Ken Washington, the automaker’s VP of research and advanced engineering. “We’re really focused on completing the work to fully take the driver out of the loop.”
At the moment, it looks like full steam ahead when it comes to full automation for both Google and Ford, who I dare to say should make a solid team.