2017 has been a difficult year for Uber. It has lost some major talent, which includes its flamboyant and outspoken founder and CEO Travis Kalanick. The frequency of employees leaving the company sparked questions about its future. The company’s problems have been compounded by a number of lawsuits and other crises. However, with all the bad vibes surrounding it, Uber’s autonomous program is continuing to move forward in the right direction. It is still a serious competitor in the lucrative autonomous vehicles market.
The organization began its journey into the autonomous vehicles industry in 2015. They started off big by acquiring more than 40 talented researchers from Carnegie Mellon University — the same university that houses the country’s best robotics program and has a long history with autonomous vehicles. The company’s advent into this venture opened the doors for scientists, autonomy enthusiasts, and entrepreneurs. What was considered irrelevant or simply ‘interesting’ a few years ago, suddenly became worthwhile and lucrative.
The Uber Advantage
Uber remains one of the few companies with necessary wherewithal to undertake serious research to develop safe autonomous vehicles. Designing and practically implementing autonomous vehicles isn’t a short-term effort and investment. It requires consistent and substantial amount of funding, human resource, and other resources such as test subjects. This is the edge that Uber maintains. As a result, Uber still retains a lot of top talent, which is continuing to progress its research.