Sep 26, 2019 (China Knowledge) - Chinese Internet giant Baidu is among three firms awarded licenses for the operation of commercial transportation services with autonomous buses in Wuhan, China. This marks the first time companies are licensed to operate commercial transportation services on public roads in China.
Previously, the Chinese authorities have awarded licenses to companies for the trial of autonomous transportation services. However, the latest licenses allow the firms to fully operate a commercial autonomous transportation fleet on 28 km of public roads in Wuhan, China.
The autonomous transportation will make use of artificial intelligence (AI) algorithms in its technology. The services will mainly be powered via 5G network using the BeiDou satellite positioning system in China. China Mobile and Huawei Technologies, pioneers with the development of 5G in China, will help to set up the relevant 5G network infrastructure in Wuhan.
In recent years, China has become a key leader in the research and development of 5G, as well as autonomous vehicles. The licensing of commercial 5G autonomous transportation services in Wuhan will help kickstart similar service across the whole of China.
The government of Wuhan will also be looking to increase the number of public roads allowed for the operations of the new services, from 28km to 159 km, in the near future.
Apart from Baidu, Shanghai-based DeepBlue Technology and Shenzhen Haylion Technologies were also awarded the licenses.
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