Waymo, an Alphabet company that also owns Google, has sued Uber for what they claimed was theft of their company secrets in self-driving technology. This mainly came about when some ex-Waymo employees formed its own company and then sold it to Uber. Waymo wanted almost $2B at first but then it looked like they weren’t really going to get much at all. So, when they have announced that the lawsuit was settled it came as a surprise. Nevertheless, Uber agreed to pay about quarter of a billion dollars in equity which is about 1/3 of a percent of the company which is still privately held. Alphabet already owns a small portion of Uber as they have invested into the company a few years back. Uber seemed to want to end the nightmare that this trial was adding to already existing PR issues as the facts of how ugly the inter-workings of Uber have been under the former CEO.
Even though the case is settled, it shows how big the self-driving technology is becoming. As I’ve reported earlier in the year, it looks like self-driving tech is no longer targeting regular drivers as the main priority, but rather the focus has shifted to the ride sharing companies that see huge profits in the future as they develop this young technology.