Uber and Waymo settle self-driving technology case

Shortly after the start of their highly-publicised court case over allegations of stolen self-driving car technology, Alphabet-owned Waymo and Uber announced on Friday that they had reached a settlement.

According to the New York Times, the agreement will see Waymo receive 0.34 percent of Uber’s stock.

In a statement on the ride-hailing company’s blog, Uber CEO Dara Khosrowshahi, who took the reins at the company last year, expressed regret for the company’s past actions.

“My job as Uber’s CEO is to set the course for the future of the company: innovating and growing responsibly, as well as acknowledging and correcting mistakes of the past,” wrote Khosrowshahi. “In doing so, I want to express regret for the actions that have caused me to write this letter.”

Addressing Uber’s “friends” at Alphabet, Khosrowshahi said that while the companies might not agree on everything, “we agree that Uber’s acquisition of Otto could and should have been handled differently.”

While the alleged behaviour at the centre of the dispute raised some hard questions, said Khosrowshahi, “we do not believe that any trade secrets made their way from Waymo to Uber, nor do we believe that Uber has used any of Waymo’s proprietary information in its self-driving technology.”

Nonetheless, the company would be working with Waymo “to ensure our Lidar and software represents just our good work”, he wrote.

As Uber changes the way it operates, the company is looking forward to the “great race” to build the future, said the CEO. “We believe that race should be fair—and one whose ultimate winners are people, cities and our environment.”