Future of autonomous vehicles

Work on developing the technology behind autonomous vehicles began in the 1970s, and it continues apace. The idea behind these vehicles is that they can sense the environment around them and don’t require any human involvement to drive and control them. There are six stages to creating this type of autonomous vehicle. Read on to learn more about these stages, see which stage we’re currently at, and discover the positives, negatives, and challenges of developing autonomous vehicles.

How are autonomous vehicles being accepted by the public?

Public perception is one of the major challenges in developing autonomous vehicles. According to a 2021 American Automobile Association (AAA) survey, only 22% of respondents thought that manufacturers should focus on developing autonomous vehicles. The story is similar in the UK. A 2021 YouGov survey found that only 23% of respondents would be happy to sit in an autonomous vehicle, and 67% said they would be unhappy driving on the same roads as autonomous vehicles. People are also concerned about potential data protection issues and the probable high purchase costs of these vehicles.

It’s important to note that autonomous vehicles have several benefits, such as 360° vision, interconnection between vehicles, and enhanced access for people with disabilities. Despite these advantages, overcoming public mistrust is a significant obstacle that developers and manufacturers face.

The levels of autonomous vehicles

The autonomy of vehicles is categorised by six different levels as follows:

  • Level 0 – no automation present.
  • Level 1 – driver assistance present – hands on or shared control.
  • Level 2 – partial driving automation present – hands off.
  • Level 3 – conditional driving automation present – eyes off.
  • Level 4 – high level of driving automation present – mind off.
  • Level 5 – full driving automation present – optional steering wheel.

Currently, we are at level 2, with level 3 not far away. Level 4 is expected to be reached by the middle of the decade, and optimistic predictions suggest that level 5 will follow soon after. Once autonomous vehicles are at this level, it will be possible to do many other things while you are driving.

It will be possible to access entertainment which is a significant improvement on having to concentrate while navigating miles of long boring roads or motorways. For example, you could use your tablet or smartphone to watch a movie or play a game at Platincasino Ireland and keep yourself entertained during long journeys. Also, if you are travelling to an event, you could get ready during your journey, which is a big time saver.

Safer and reliable mobility

There’s still a long way to go before full vehicle automation is safe and reliable enough to be available on public roads. Technology is still evolving and testing is underway. The main problem with testing is getting enough mileage on roads to demonstrate the reliability of self-driving cars. So, other testing methods are being considered, such as simulation and closed courses. On-road testing has to be the last step for safety reasons.

Collaboration in the industry

There are substantial challenges facing automotive companies and tech companies looking to produce self-driving vehicles. In the case of automotive companies, these challenges are caused by the need for hardware and software, while tech companies face the challenge of producing safe and reliable vehicles. Companies will likely need to collaborate to benefit from their respective strengths and overcome these challenges.

Conclusion

Fully autonomous vehicles will allow us to play games, watch movies, and even get ready for a night out while travelling. However, these benefits are still a few years away. Full automation is categorised as level 5, and we’re currently at level 2. To progress further, developers and manufacturers must overcome public reluctance and ensure the safety and reliability of self-driving vehicles. Work is underway to do this.

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By Jim O Brien/CEO

CEO and expert in transport and Mobile tech. A fan 20 years, mobile consultant, Nokia Mobile expert, Former Nokia/Microsoft VIP,Multiple forum tech supporter with worldwide top ranking,Working in the background on mobile technology, Weekly radio show, Featured on the RTE consumer show, Cavan TV and on TRT WORLD. Award winning Technology reviewer and blogger. Security and logisitcs Professional.

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