Japan having a record of the most rapidly aging nation on Earth seems to get the most benefit with the release of driverless car. Last month, the number of citizens age 100 and above hits over 60,000 whereas the number was only about 153 in 1963. This figure means that one in every three people in Japan will be at least 65 or one in every five people will be at least 75 years old.
A Japanese company called Robot Taxi announced that they are coming up with cabbie-free taxis ready by Tokyo Summer Olympics in 2020. Its road tests would begin next year in Kanagawa which is in south of Tokyo and of course, there will be an employee on board as a safety precaution according to reports from Wall Street Journal. The company is targeting for senior citizens and people with no access to public transportation.
With all these said, there are also some challenges that the service will face. One of them is how to get people comfortable enough to use the service. However, it might be easier in Japan as robot images are portrayed as cute, friendly and they are able to live side by side with humans whereas in some other countries such as US, with movies such as Terminators and Cylons, robots are perceived as big, industrial and scary thing.
Giant technology and automaker companies are competing to be the first to release driverless cars on the road. It is getting more exciting, isn’t it?