Toyota, Softbank to test ride-sharing service
NHK -- Feb 27
Two leading Japanese firms plan to launch an on-demand ride-sharing service. Toyota and Softbank see a promising market in the growing number of people who think of cars as something to use, but not to own.

The joint venture is called Monet Technologies. A trial run of the new service starts on Tuesday.

80 people who work in Tokyo are taking part in the month-long test. They'll use a smartphone app to reserve rides for their daily commute.

Groups of up to four people will share a van. It comes with Wi-Fi and individual desks.

Feedback from the trial run will be used in developing an AI-program that dispatches vehicles efficiently. Researchers also want to find out what specific features commuters want.

Monet Technologies plans to launch the service using self-driving vehicles as soon as 2023.

ソフトバンクとトヨタが組んだあの会社が動き出しました。 26日に始まったのは、スマホで予約を受けると絵本や軽食、パソコンが使える設備などを搭載した車が送迎する実証実験です。 利用した人:「やっぱり楽ですね。(社内で)勉強とか英語もできると思う」「2人で楽しい時間を過ごした。
News sources: NHK, ANNnewsCH
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