He also suggested NTT would invest in a US autonomous driving technology startup.
NTT wants to tap into growing momentum in Japan’s autonomous driving and robotaxi sector which was highlighted by the announcement last month of an agreement between Honda, General Motors and Cruise to launch a commercial autonomous taxi service in the country by 2026
NTT would invest JPY10bn (US$67m) in Michigan based autonomous driving startup May Mobility with the aim of trialing autonomous buses and taxis by 2025. The vehicles would be developed with Toyota, according to unconfirmed local reports.
Japanese insurer Tokio Marine and Toyota Tsusho joined a $111m funding round in May Mobility last year which also included returning investors Toyota Ventures and BMW i Ventures which had already participated in an earlier funding round.
Earlier this year. May Mobility launched its third generation autonomous driving system which, it said, provides improved safety, efficiency and rider satisfaction.
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Improvements include increased speed, tele assist capabilities and improved detection accuracy.