A bus shuttling passengers across Greenwich might not sound newsworthy, but this one’s a little different: its driver is a robot.
Resembling the pods that ferry passengers to and from airport terminals, the shuttle carries four people and travels at speeds of up to 10mph.
Around 5,000 people applied for the 100 places available through the three month trial which will assess the public’s response to driverless vehicles.
The shuttle navigates using five cameras and three lasers and was developed by Oxbotica, an Oxford University spin-out.
The company has run similar trials before, rolling out the first ever driverless cars on to the streets of the UK last year in Milton Keynes.
While the bus doesn’t have pedals or a steering wheel, it does have stop button overseen by a trained operator.
Officials say the shuttles could start ferrying paying customers around Greenwich as soon 2018 if the trials are a success.
As the driverless trials kickstart in London, Dubai is preparing to launch the world’s first flying taxi.
The emirate’s transport authority has signed up Ehang, a Chinese firm, to start operating flights of its autonomous, single-seat quadcopter this July.
Equipped with eight propellors, the taxi can travel at 60mph and fly at an altitude of 300 metres. Those without a head for heights need not apply.
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