Lyft drivers have a future for at least a decade before autonomous takes over

Autonomous technology will likely take over, but Lyft drivers have at least a decade before worrying about their gigs - the future is coming.

Lyft drivers have a future for at least a decade before autonomous takes over
1 minute & 21 seconds read time

Ride-share company Lyft is working towards an autonomous future where passengers are transported to and from their destinations in a self-driving vehicle. However, that doesn't mean drivers need to worry about job security just yet, as it'll be at least a decade before Lyft needs less drivers, according to John Zimmer, Lyft co-founder and president.

Lyft drivers have a future for at least a decade before autonomous takes over 01

Since its launch, there have been over 112 million Lyft passengers that have taken over 3 billion rides while supported by 5 million drivers - so talk about autonomous has some drivers cautious about what lies ahead.

Lyft has reportedly completed over 100,000 autonomous rides so far, and that number is only increasing. Here is what Zimmer had to say regarding drivers and autonomous: "I can't imagine anytime in the next decade-plus where we would need any less drivers.

It's possible a hybrid approach relies on both autonomous vehicles and human drivers to help Lyft meet demand - there is concern a fully autonomous fleet will tend to be under-supplied or over-supplied, removing any type of cost savings for passengers.

As for when autonomous vehicles will become more widely commercialized, it's harder to pinpoint a time frame:

"I always think it's just a couple years away, but it's super hard to predict. It's this last percent of a technical problem, and then you have to get the cost down for autonomous vehicles. So it will happen. I strongly believe it's not a matter of if, but obviously when."

Zimmer previously thought Lyft's rides would be autonomous by 2021, and while that goal clearly wasn't met, the company is still moving forward with self-driving rides.

This shouldn't be a big secret - both Lyft and Uber spoke openly about their intentions to make the passenger ride-share experience autonomous. In addition, a handful of other companies vying for space in a market that is expected to explode in the coming years.

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An experienced tech journalist and marketing specialist, Michael joins TweakTown to cover everything from cars & electric vehicles to solar and green energy topics. A former Staff Writer at DailyTech, Michael is now the Cars & Electric Vehicles News Reporter and will contribute news stories on a daily basis. In addition to contributing here, Michael also runs his own tech blog,, while he looks to remain busy in the tech world.

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