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Google’s self-driving car project has made small gains over the past six years. However, it received a major boost when Google created its parent company, Alphabet. The company has announced that John Krafcik, a longtime automotive industry veteran, will be the CEO of its driverless car project, which is under the Google X research division.

Krafcik was enthusiastic about joining the project and took to Twitter to announce his involvement. “I’m joining the Google Self-Driving Car project in late September. This is a great opportunity to help Google develop the enormous potential of self-driving cars. I can’t wait to get started,” he said. “Self-driving cars could save thousands of lives, give people greater mobility and free us from things we find frustrating about driving today,” he also said, alluding to the frustrations of commuting, which is estimated to cost an average $2,600 a year, money that consumers can put elsewhere.

Despite Krafcik’s previous experience with Ford in a product management role and serving as the CEO of Hyundai North America, Google has said that it does not intend to become a car manufacturer. “Krafcik’s background shouldn’t be interpreted as a sign that Google intends to become a manufacturer of self-driving cars. We’re not going to make cars ourselves,” said Google spokeswoman Courtney Hohne to Automotive News. “We know what we’re good at, and we’ll partner with many different companies to bring this technology into the world safely.”

While some are skeptical of the driverless cars, Google has logged over 1 million miles in Mountain View, California and Austin, Texas. The company has reported 16 accidents, all caused by human drivers hitting the driverless cars. “It’s always going to follow the rules, I mean, almost to a point where human drivers who get in the car and are like ‘Why is the car doing that?’” said Tom Supple, a Google safety driver.

Uber has also gotten into the industry of driverless cars, which could spark a clash between the two companies over transporting people from Point A to Point B. A Google vs. Uber showdown would be quite the battle, considering Google invested $258 million in Uber back in 2013. What a cruel twist of fate it would be for Google should Uber triumph in this self-driving car venture.

Uber CEO Travis Kalanick has said that he sees driverless cars as the future. “Look, this is the way the world is going,” he said at the 2015 Code Conference. “If Uber doesn’t go there, it’s not going to exist either way,” he added, implying that current Uber drivers might be put out of a job because of automation. While Kalanick has said that it won’t happen right now, he said there could be benefits down the line, such as fewer accidents, less congestion and a cheaper option than owning a car. “It’s not technology for technology’s sake. There’s real advancements for how cities work,” he added.

Automakers and tech companies are watching the driverless car industry. There are reports that Mercedes-Benz has also looked into building a fleet of driverless luxury cars, and Apple is also rumored to enter the driverless car market with “Project Titan,” even luring away Tesla employees to work on the project. Mercedes-Benz’s parent company, Daimler, already has three products—car2go, MyTaxi and HERE, which allows users to carpool, map routes and call cars much like Uber. “It would be extremely practical if the car2go appeared without needing to be prompted, once my appointment in the calendar had come to an end,” said Dieter Zetsche, CEO of Daimler.

With so many players on the chessboard, and Google and Uber serving as the heavy hitters spearheading the movement, the evolution of driverless vehicles should be an interesting match to watch unfold.

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