It might not strictly be SXSW, but with the news that Google is planning to send its self-driving cars out on the streets of Austin, there’s every chance that the Mountain View based company will use the March Madness to promote it;s automotive ambitions.
Choosing Austin is a pretty smart move – there’s a tech stronghold in the city that the local council would love to compare to Silicon Valley, and with Google Fibre already under the streets of the State Capital Google has a lot invested in the city., So why not roll out the cars as well? Steve Dent reports for Engadget:
Plenty of folks in Austin, Texas have spotted Google’s distinctive self-driving Lexus cars recently, and now we know why. The company revealed that it’s now rolling the vehicles in downtown Austin in order to “(test) our software in different driving environments, traffic patterns and road conditions.” While Google could also test its self-driving cars in Nevada and elsewhere, Austin is the first city outside of Mountain View where it’s actually done so. The reason? “We’ve loved how much Austin embraces innovation,” a Google spokesperson told the Austin American-Statesmen. She added that with Google Fiber and several company offices in the city, it was a natural fit for self-driving cars.
I still think I’ll go with the B-Cycles come March. What about you?