June 2, 2017 / 1:30 AM / 4 months ago

Waymo working on self-driving trucks

FILE PHOTO - The Waymo logo is displayed during the company's unveil of a self-driving Chrysler Pacifica minivan during the North American International Auto Show in Detroit, Michigan, U.S., January 8, 2017. REUTERS/Brendan McDermid/File Photo

(Reuters) - Alphabet Inc’s (GOOGL.O) self-driving car unit Waymo is working on developing self-driving trucks, the company said on Thursday.

Waymo, which is looking to expand its self-driving car efforts, expects autonomous vehicles to be able to take over longer distance trucking in the coming years, while allowing human drivers to handle local pickup and delivery routes.

“We’re taking our eight years of experience in building self-driving hardware and software and conducting a technical exploration into how our technology can integrate into a truck,” a Waymo spokesperson said in a statement.

Other companies have also been working on self-driving trucks. Ride services company Uber Technologies is working on autonomous trucking through its Otto unit, which it acquired last year.

Reporting by Ankit Ajmera in Bengaluru; Editing by Leslie Adler

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