Uber Otto Self-Driving Truck Delivers Budweiser Beer
In the first real-world commercial use of autonomous trucking, some 45,000 cans of Budweiser beer arrived late last week to a warehouse after traveling over 120 highway miles in a self-driving truck with no driver at the wheel, executives from Uber and Anheuser-Busch said.
Otto, the self-driving truck subsidiary of Uber, shipped a truckload of Budweiser from Fort Collins, Colo. to Colorado Springs last Thursday with the driver monitoring from the truck’s sleeper berth for the entire two-hour journey, Otto’s co-founder Lior Ron and Anheuser-Busch’s senior director of logistics strategy, James Sembrot, told Reuters on Friday.
Transportation experts predict the earliest applications of autonomous technology will be in self-driving trucks, not cars. The technology is best suited to the relative predictability of long hauls on highways, rather than busy city streets with many distractions.
The biggest cost savings for the trucking industry will eventually come from eliminating the driver entirely, but Ron said drivers would remain inside the trucks “for the foreseeable future.”
Otto was paid the market rate of $470 for the job using one of its trucks outfitted with the new technology.
Source: Fortune, Reuters