Waymo announced in the past month that it’s driving a million miles roughly every month, while its Phoenix pilot has 400 daily riders. That year-long program is revealing insights about people’s first interactions with autonomous vehicles, with the Alphabet division today announcing new partnerships with local businesses.
These new experiences aim to provide “unique value for our riders” after Waymo revealed last month the top ten activities and places people ride to with autonomous vehicles.
We’ve tailored our partnerships to meet the top rider needs; in fact, the partnerships below represent eight of the top ten activities our riders do when they get in a Waymo.
The most significant partnership today is with Walmart, enabling grocery pickups that have been scheduled ahead of time. Later this week, a test pilot will offer members of the early rider program discounts on weekly groceries that are ordered online.
While orders are being prepared at the store, Waymo vehicles will transport the rider to and from Walmart to collect their groceries.
Waymo is also partnering with the Ahwatukee Foothills Towne Center in Chandler so that visitors can shop and dine without thinking about parking. Meanwhile, a partnership with the Element Hotel will offer VIP guests Waymo vehicles as they travel in town.
The last relationship is with existing partners Avis and AutoNation. The former already services and maintains Waymo’s fleet of Chrysler Pacifica Hybrids in Arizona, but is now offering autonomous rides to customers having vehicles serviced. Meanwhile, Avis — responsible for for charging and cleaning the minivans — will use Waymo for customers picking up and dropping off rental cars.