A Japanese company has brought us a step closer to autonomous public transport with its Robot Shuttle.
Already, the electric Robot Shuttle has completed its first public trials, traversing a 400 meter section of public road along Lake Tazawa in Semboku in Akita, a northern prefecture of Japan.
According to Jiji Press reports, while moving at a not-so-expedient 10kph (6mph), the test was operated successfully. It drove 6 people, half of its 12 person capacity, down the road and back again.
The bus was unveiled back in July, with tech giant DeNA now putting it to its first public test. The local government is hoping to bring autonomous public transport to smaller, more rural areas of Japan, reports the Japan Times.
Japan has competition though, with a similar trial taking place last month in Australia — and one in Finland a month before that.