Self-driving cars are nothing to new us right. We have all seen concepts from Tesla, Google, and even Uber, but what about self-driving shops? Yes you read right! Self-driving shops. Mobile shops that you can order to come and meet you just like you would an Uber, but this time with no attendant, just your goods inside.
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This is what Toyota intends to have ready by the 2020 Olympics in Japan. It is called the Toyota e-Pallete, and we all saw it being unveiled at this year's Consumer Electronics Show (CES).Toyota describes it as a fully autonomous, battery-electric vehicle with open control interface to allow partner companies to install their own automated driving system.
Thus different companies can apply it for different uses and its intended purposes can range from delivering medical supplies to serving as a ride sharing vehicle. It can even serve as a tourist information system, and even serve as a commercial apparatus serving as a digital marketplace.
All these are efforts in the larger context to transform Toyota from just a car company, to a full digital, mobility company; and this is not just an idea because some serious companies have signed on to try the product. Some of them are Didi - the Apple backed Chinese Uber, Uber itself, Apple, and even Pizza hut.
Apparently, the potential is so much that even Japanese Mazda have a similar project at hand. Obviously, the project is more than a concept, as we saw some live demonstrations of how it could deliver packages, or even assist customers to try on new products. The future surely looks exciting.
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