Online giant Amazon.com Inc. (AMZN), this summer, bought the Zoox start-up, which builds robot vehicles. Details of this development and the company’s growth plans have now become known.
One of Amazon’s largest acquisitions was the $1.2 billion purchase of Zoox. The management of the largest online retailer, however, obviously finds this path very promising and is prepared to spend certain amounts.
Zoox unveiled its robot car at mid of this month and announced some parameters of its operation. The car is thus capable of carrying up to four passengers, going in either direction and has a maximum speed of 75 miles per hour. The batteries are enough to keep the car running on a single charge for up to 16 hours.
In several U.S. cities, including San Francisco and Las Vegas, the company aims to launch a taxi app. Zoox wants to enter markets outside of the United States as well. The management of Zoox said that the car had passed all safety measures. It moves by collecting data from sensors and cameras mounted on each side of the vehicle. This implies that, at any time of the day, the car has a complete 360-degree view.
The Zoox production could potentially be used not only as a taxi, but also as a delivery service vehicle. And even though the organization still has no such ambitions, Amazon will become a rival to Uber Technologies Inc (UBER) with its start-up, which also introduces passenger transport and distribution projects. Uber Technologies was forced to stop research because of a fatal accident two years ago. The company later, however, made improvements to the testing protocol, restricted the speed and implemented additional safety measures.
Several important factors, including customer and business demand, are leading to the rapid spread of robot cars. The availability of such vehicles will transform the economy, and in the next decade, businesses which are already investing in this field will be able to achieve a financial return on their investments.
At the close of the session on December 24, Amazon.com Inc. (AMZN) stock was slightly down (-0.39%) to $3,172.69 while Uber Technologies Inc (UBER) stock was also down -1.55% to $52.88 on the day.