Waymo Self-driving Vehicles
Waymo partnered with Walmart in Chandler, Ariz. to expand tests of its self-driving vehicles. The 400 members of Waymo’s early riders program can take a self-driving vehicle to and from the Walmart when they purchase groceries from Walmart.com. Those who go to Walmart in Waymo’s self-driving vehicles will even have their own parking spots.Waymo made several other partnerships based on feedback from its early riders program, but Walmart is the biggest name on the partnership list.
Undoubtedly, Waymo sees itself as more than tech-savvy taxi service. An early partnership like the Walmart pilot program is a first glimpse into what broader commercialization might look like for Waymo self-driving cars. Partnering with company’s with an established national network of locations, like Walmart, will help Waymo clear expansion hurdles when the time comes. Waymo made it clear that it plans for this to be more than just a summer fling.
“While these are Metro Phoenix-specific partnerships today, these businesses are national and what we learn from these programs will give us a network of partners when we launch in new cities down the road. We’re proud to be a part of Metro Phoenix and are excited to grow and add partnerships that support the cities we operate in, bring unique value to our riders, and give more people access to a safe, self-driving future,” Waymo said.