Waymo is widely regarded as the leader in self-driving, so much so that Uber is willing to partner with the Alphabet division to supply autonomous vehicles for its ride service. This news comes following Uber’s settlement last month, as well as the company’s less combative stance.
According to The Information, CEO Dara Khosrowshahi and other Uber executives have “signaled to Waymo” an interest in a previous partnership idea. Similar to a current Waymo-Lyft arrangement, Uber users would be able to hail and ride in the driverless Alphabet electric minivans.
The recently appointed CEO previously told investors that Uber wins by having “every single autonomous player plugged into the network.” Meanwhile, the company is continuing work on its own self-driving efforts, and is looking at other partnerships.
Waymo last year announced that it plans to launch a competing public ride service for the Phoenix area in 2018. The service will be fully autonomous and not require a safety rider in the vehicle.
As evident with the Lyft partnership from last May, and as The Information notes, autonomous car makers are open to working with multiple services to get vehicles on the road.
Waymo has yet to indicate whether its ready to strike a deal, though executives at the Alphabet company have “long considered Uber an obvious potential partner,” according to today’s report.
Meanwhile, for Uber, a deal would help pacify the threat of Lyft and its Waymo deal. A partnership between Uber and Google’s self-driving efforts was considered as far back as 2013 before hostilities between the two companies arose.