Waymo One Achieves Semifinal Status for DOT’s Disabilities Design Challenge

Waymo One Achieves Semifinal Status for DOT's Disabilities Design Challenge, Screen Capture/YouTube/Waymo

Waymo One Achieves Semifinal Status for DOT’s Disabilities Design Challenge, Screen Capture/YouTube/Waymo

Waymo recently make it to the semifinals in the U.S. Department of Transportation Waymo One Achieves Semifinal Status for DOT’s Disabilities Design Challenge. DOT’s goal was to to use automated vehicles to help enable people with physical, sensory, and cognitive disabilities access jobs, healthcare, and other critical destinations:

“The DOT is helping to further creative product thinking around inclusive mobility, and we’re proud of the features that we designed and integrated into our Waymo One service.”

Waymo reached out to various groups affected by lack of mobility options. Through the Let’s Talk Autonomous Driving public education initiative, Waymo sought input.

The features Waymo developed for the Waymo One ride-hailing service follow:

Turn-by-turn navigation: This system guides the user on the most appropriate path for pedestrians, utilizing knowledge of sidewalks, crosswalks, and other terrain features to provide the most suitable route.

Car ID: Waymo’s Car ID feature is a visual way for users to identify their assigned vehicle at a near-to-medium distance.

Purpose-built car sounds: Being able to honk the horn is a feature we launched in our autonomous Waymo service and it has been a huge help for wayfinding to the car, particularly for someone who is blind or who has low-vision.

Distance-to-car compass: To meet this need for close-range guidance, we developed a compass tool that directs riders toward their vehicle or pickup spot, guiding both distance and direction.

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