On August 18 Uber announced its driverless taxis would be picking-up passengers on the streets of Pittsburg by the end of the month.
Singapore on Thursday became the first country in the world with a fully autonomous ride-sharing service offered to the public.
Select members of the public can hail a free ride through their smartphones in taxis operated by nuTonomy, an autonomous vehicle software start-up.
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While plenty of firms around the world are investing heavily in developing their own driverless vehicle systems, NuTonomy also has local competition from automobile technology supplier Delphi, which aims to start testing a similar self-driving taxi service next year.
Backed by the Singapore government, NuTonomy hopes to have what it calls its "robo-taxi" service running through the city by 2018.
According to commentators, the trial although small, demonstrated the intensity of the global race to develop autonomous driving vehicles.
App-based taxi company Uber is also looking into driverless vehicles and began trialling the technology in Pittsburgh in May, with a view to offering public rides in the coming weeks.
Meanwhile, you can check out NuTonomy's promo video for its Singapore launch below.
According to the Associated Press, when a reporter went on a test drive, the "driver" had to apply the brakes once when one auto obstructed vehicles path and another auto (appearing to be parked) began to move into the lane.
NuTonomy hope that one day it could help cut the number of vehicles on Singapore's crowded roads by as many 600,000, bringing the figure down to a more acceptable 300,000.
The company has been actively speaking to a number of automakers for a potential partnership, nuTonomy COO Doug Parker told Recode during the test drive, and may even consider licensing their technology to automakers sometime down the line. The six-vehicle fleet includes battery-powered Renault Zoe and Mitsubishi iMiev models. "We want to take advantage of self-driving technology to overcome such constraints", said Pang Kin Keong, Singapore's Permanent Secretary for Transport. "When people get into the auto, some will love it, some will be indifferent and some won't like it", CEO and co-founder of nuTonomy, Karl Iagnemma, said to The Associated Press.
NuTonomy's Mr. Parker said one of the trial's goals is to introduce the public to the new technology.
"I couldn't see [any obstacles] with my human eye, but the auto could, so I knew that I could trust the vehicle", Olivia Seow, told the Associated Press of her ride in the autonomous taxi.