In Japan, Nissan and DeNA will face competition from Japanese robotics maker ZMP Inc, which is working with a Tokyo taxi operator to develop a self-driving taxi service it hopes to have up and running during the 2020 Tokyo Olympics.
As technology continues to make public transport faster, more efficient, and more sustainable, auto manufacturers are looking for new ways to operate in the evolving mobility market, as Nissan becomes the latest to reveal an autonomous taxi service.
The test will take place between 5 and 8 March in the Minatomirai district of Yokohama, Kanagawa Prefecture.
The report says Nissan will start with two Leaf vehicles modified with autonomous vehicle sensors and compute on roads, with staff actively monitoring pick up and drop-off locations, and an open application for participation in the test program available to the public. "With customers able to discover new local destinations through Easy Ride, the companies expect the service will also help energize cities and neighborhoods".More news: Game of Thrones star says final season won't air until 2019
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"With "more freedom of mobility" as its concept, Easy Ride is envisioned as a service for anyone who wants to travel freely to their destination of choice in a robo-vehicle", Nissan said.
A multi-lingual version of the app in under development including a system that will monitor riders and the vehicle to ensure utmost safety.
The companies, which began a technical field test using an autonomous vehicle this year, will recruit participants for the March field test until January. The test service known as Easy Ride will be open for 2 weeks.