Google has published a new report about its autonomous cars project. The company has revealed that its self-driving cars travel three million virtual miles every day. This equates to circling the Equator five times per hour, which is quite a stark contrast compared to the time they spend on public streets.
As far as actual road tests go, the company says its autonomous driving cars travel anywhere between 15,000 to 25,000 kilometers in a week on public roads.
Google further added in the report that these simulated drives form an integral part of the company’s self-driving cars initiative. These simulated drives allow engineers to make the required tweaks in the car’s software and further enhance their driving skills. Google then tests these changes in the virtual environment, after which they’re applied to its fleet of cars.
“Testing on public roads is a vital part of developing our software, allowing us to drive in new environments and come across new experiences. But with the powerful driving simulator that we’ve developed, we’re also able to learn without a single car leaving the garage,” said Google in its self-driving cars report.
Some experts belive self-driving cars have the potential to revolutionize the way we commute. Even Daimler (Mercedes-Benz parent company) chairman Dieter Zetsche during his recent visit to the Silicon Valley seemed pretty impressed with the progress Google and Apple are making in autonomous driving technology.
“Our impression was that these companies can do more and know more than we had previously assumed. At the same time they have more respect for our achievements than we thought,” said Zetsche in a report.