Baidu hopes to launch Apollo Go in 100 cities
Baidu hopes to launch Apollo Go in 100 cities

Baidu plans to roll out self-driving taxi services in 100 cities by 2030 as the Chinese search giant hopes to diversify its business beyond the announcement.

Baidu continues to increase its ambitions for self-driving. The Chinese tech company has made a name for itself in the search engines but still relies heavily on search advertising revenue. But she hopes her big bet on self-driving will pay off in the future.

Baidu currently operates Apollo Go, a self-driving taxi service, in five cities in China. Users can order self-driving cars via the app.

Company co-founder and CEO Robin Lee said in an internal message that the company hopes to expand Apollo Go to 65 cities by 2025 and then to 100 cities by 2030.

This represents a large number of licenses that a company must obtain from local regulators. The sustainability of the business is due to the number of these licenses that support the commercial operation of the Apollo Go service.

The speed of Baidu's expansion plan underscores the company's investment in autonomous driving, which analysts say represents $1 billion in business for the tech giant of the future.

He currently believes that Baidu could be the world's largest provider of automated taxi services by number of trips.

In the third quarter alone, the company operated 115,000 flights. Lee predicts that the number will be much higher in the last quarter than the number of reports you can hear anywhere else in the world.

To date, with the aim of improving driving technology, the company has covered more than 16 million kilometers of L4 autonomous driving routes.

Baidu recorded sales of 4.95 billion dollars

Baidu announced the launch of self-driving cars after the company reported third-quarter sales of $4.95 billion. It is above market expectations.

However, Li warned that advertising spending will be affected by China's slowdown in economic growth. Especially in the fields of education and real estate. Most of Baidu's revenue is still from advertising.

“We assume that these problems will persist in the short term,” the CEO said. To diversify its activities, the company has invested in areas ranging from semiconductors to electric vehicles to autonomous driving.

Baidu does not make cars, but it is the inventor of autopilot technology. The company has worked with a number of Chinese automakers to expand its vehicle fleet.

Baidu has been providing driving solutions to car manufacturers via the open source Apollo platform since 2017. As the platform brings together hundreds of corporate users, Baidu has built closer relationships with specific partners.

It has set up a joint venture with China's Geely to create electric car maker Jidu Automobile. Partners will pump 7.7 billion dollars.

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