comscore Uber hires ex-Google Search head Amit Singhal for its self-driving car project

Uber hires ex-Google Search head Amit Singhal for its self-driving car project

Amit Singhal will be leading Uber’s mapping division.


Uber s gone straight for the kill with its latest hire. For long now, Uber and Google have been bitter rivals in the race to build their autonomous vehicle. And now, Uber has hired the man behind Google search to work closely with its chief executive Travis Kalanick and help grow the company s self-driving car program. Amit Singhal, former Senior Vice President of Search, has joined the ride-hailing company as SVP of Engineering. Also Read - Google Android 12 for TV rolling out with some much-needed features: Check details

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Amit Singhal, a 15-year Google veteran, yesterday announced on his personal blog that he will be joining Uber, which he calls a geek s candy store.” At Uber, Singhal will work to build out the software and infrastructure that are the foundation of the company s ride-hailing services. He will lead the company s mapping division as well as a unit that runs the dispatching, marketing and pricing of Uber cars. In addition to that, Singhal will also be advising Anthony Levandowski, who runs the company s self-driving automobile efforts. ALSO READ: Why Uber is bullish on carpooling, ride-sharing for Indian roads Also Read - Steam support coming to Chrome OS devices soon

It s hard enough to connect millions of drivers to millions of riders in real time while creating optimal routes for drivers. Add to that the twist of predicting real-time traffic, pooling multiple riders and making the system economically attractive for everyone and now you have one of the most challenging computer science problems I ve encountered in my thirty-year career, Singhal wrote in his blog.

After retiring from Google last year in February, Singhal is quite evidently excited for his new venture. In his blog the Google veteran reveals how he is really looking forward to be working at Uber. And don t even get me started on how interesting and exciting self-driving is for a computer scientist. I hope by now you have a sense of why the computer scientist in me feels that Uber is a geek s candy store and why I can t wait to get started applying computer science to the real world, for real people, to improve real lives. ALSO READ: Google Search chief Amit Singhal retires, AI head to take over

Uber debuted its self-driving car pilot in Pittsburgh, in September 2016. It launched a second fleet in San Francisco late last year, but a feud with California regulators over Uber s failure to obtain proper permitting compelled the company to take its autonomous testing cars off the streets. Uber then packed up its cars and brought them to Arizona, where there are no special regulations for autonomous testing.

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  • Published Date: January 21, 2017 4:35 PM IST

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