Do People Really Want Self-Driving Vehicles?

Do People Really Want Self-Driving Vehicles?

The short answer to this question is no, not really, at least not yet! The majority of people are not that enthusiastic about self-driving vehicles.

And the greatest concern is safety according to several surveys. There are numerous other reasons for this lack of enthusiasm, one being that we, the ‘people on the street,’ future consumers, were never really consulted or considered at the outset of its development. It was fueled more by the needs of companies vying to be at the forefront of technological advancements after the military started developing and testing the technology in the early to mid-2000s.

People are afraid of self-driving cars

And then there’s the scary matter of AI driving…people just don’t trust fully autonomous cars –not just yet! According to a survey conducted by the Automobile Association in 2019, 71% of Americans are afraid of self-driving cars, alevel of skepticism that has held steady from past surveys. In a 2018 survey, 73% of Americans said they did not trust them, a study which was conducted a few months after an autonomous test vehicle, operated by Uber Technologies Inc., killed a pedestrian in Tempe, Arizona.

Attitudes changing –people warming up to self-driving cars

That being said, attitudes are starting toslowlychange as people become more familiar and comfortable with the idea.Self-driving companies like Waymo, are starting to engage with the public, and started offering a robotaxi servicein suburban Phoenix in December 2018. And self-drive test cars are being conducted in many states, including California, Arizona and Florida. Studies have also found that car owners who have semi-autonomous vehicles, who use features like Tesla’s Autopilot, or who have driver-assist technology in their cars, like automatic emergency braking and lane-keeping software, are moreamenable to the concept of fully autonomous cars.

Benefits of self-driving cars

Proponents tout their benefits, saying their use can decrease accidents by preventing human errors caused by distractions such as texting and phone calls. They also employ algorithims that can determine the correct stopping distance for instance. Autonomous cars park themselves –yep it’s true! No more wasting time circling around the lot for a free spot. The car does it for you. It’s like owning your own Herbie! In a self-driving car you can safely catch up on other stuff during your commute, phone calls, emails, and so on. And also this would open up more accessibility for disabled and elderly people who cannot drive themselves.

Concerns regarding fully autonomous vehicles

As for the downside –these cars are expensive and it will take about a decade for prices to level out and becomeaffordable. But as well as safety concerns and not quite trusting AI, what worries many people is the possibility of glitches and hacking and of course there are privacy concerns as the vehicle continuously tracks the owner. Also some people really lovethe freedom of being in control of their own vehicle, and others simply love the feel of driving. In addition people are wonderingwhether there will be an option to switch from self-drive to manual drivingdown the road. It’s predicted that by 2030 self-driving vehicles will be the norm and most cars will have the ability to drive themselves, whether we like it or not.

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