Self-driving cars have moved from a mere fictional and playful speculation to a reality. Indeed, the days of seeing these cars on the road are no longer limited to the big screen, but rather, an integral component of the automobile industry’s next chapter. Many companies like Tesla have already been experimenting with self-driving cars for the past few decades, and progress overseas in countries like China is also notable. One of the next big inventions coming to self-driving cars is self-driving taxis. Currently robotaxi apps show the companies are still heavily subsidizing rides, so they are struggling with profitability. Even so, there is profit to be made in self-driving tech. One of the major factors behind the growth is the actual sales of the software behind the cars.
Most recently, the Chinese tech giant Baidu has become the first robotaxi operator in China to obtain permits for selling rides, with no human driver or staff member inside the vehicles. This is a major step in the economics of travel as now taxis can operate without the cost of human personnel. Currently, the permits have been issued to 10 robotaxis split between two suburban areas of Wuhan and Chongqing. If the performance of Baidu and the general self-driving taxis space is one that interests you, Baidu is set to release second quarter results on Aug. 30. Baidu currently claims they have received over one million orders for robotaxi rides.
What do you think about the issuance of these new permits and will self-driving taxi’s take-off?
I am not a financial advisor and my comments should never be taken as financial advice. Investments come with risk, so always do your research and analysis beforehand.