As smart as self-driving cars are getting, there will still be situations wherein they will need to call upon humans for help. But with automakers contemplating on the thought of removing components such as the steering wheel, accelerator, brake pedals and god knows what else, humans are set to become nothing more than just mere passengers. Because of situations like these, there is a need for a higher power to take over in case of any emergencies. Some call it a “God view,” which seems more appropriate and catchier than “Teleoperation” – the current industry name for the technology.
Many industry experts agree that this “God view” will be essential for a future of fully autonomous robo-taxis. This is something similar to the air traffic control, but even better. An autonomous vehicle teleoperator will not only be able to monitor but also operate self-driving cars.
Almost every company that’s developing self-driving technology are simultaneously planning for teleoperation services. Uber filed a patent in 2015 for a system that would allow an autonomous vehicle to get assistance from a remote operator, while self-driving startup Zoox has a patent for a “teleoperation system and method for trajectory modification of autonomous vehicles.”