Beijing: Fully automated self-driving 'robotaxis' start service in Beijing. It looks like a normal car but the white taxi by the kerb has nobody driving it, and communicates with customers digitally to obtain directions and take payment.
Beijing this week approved its first autonomous taxis for commercial use, bringing dozens of the fully driverless "robotaxis" to the streets of the Chinese capital.
The vehicles can only carry two passengers at a time and are confined to the city's southern Yizhuang area.
An employee of the taxi firm also sits in the front of the car in case any sudden intervention is needed, but the vehicle drives itself.
The roll-out is a significant step forward for the driverless ambitions of Chinese tech giant Baidu and start-up Pony.ai, who were given the green light to deploy the cars on Thursday.
But it is expected to be years before the taxis operate fully without human intervention, due to regulations and safety requirements.
Developers are hoping Chinese consumers -- who have embraced e-commerce, online payments and other digital solutions -- will quickly get used to the sensation of travelling in a car without a driver.
Pony.ai co-founder Peng Jun said the key to moving the industry forward is "policy, technology and public acceptance".
More than 500,000 trips have already been made in Pony.ai's robotaxis during earlier testing stages, the Toyota-backed start-up said.
Passengers using Baidu's "Apollo Go" cars must download an app called "Luobo kuaipao" -- meaning "radish run" -- and can hail a cab at one of 600 pick-up and drop-off points.
Sixty-seven Baidu taxis are on the roads in Beijing charging just over two yuan ($0.30) for a 5.9-kilometre (3.66-mile) journey.
Alibaba-backed start-up AutoX and ride-hailing giant DiDi Chuxing have also been running robotaxi pilot projects in cities around the country.
PM Imran Khan launches Pakistan’s first-ever digital city in Haripur
Pakistan Digital City project will be completed at a cost of Rs1.31 billion
Islamabad: Prime Minister Imran Khan on Monday performed the groundbreaking ceremony of Pakistan Digital City Special Technology Zone project, the country’s first such venture, during his visit to Huripur.
The prime minister was accompanied by Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KP) Chief Minister Mahmood Khan, federal and provincial ministers.
The Pakistan Digital City project will be completed at a cost of Rs1.31 billion and scattered over 86 kanals of land.
Pakistan Digital City Haripur is a flagship project of the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa government being launched to provide all facilities to the IT industry in one place.
The project aims to serve as a state-of-the-art facility to enable collaborations and innovation amongst academia, research, industry and planners from within country and abroad.
It will benefit other allied industries like electronics, software houses, mobile phone industry, technology incubators, and computer industry in the province.
Last month, Prime Minister Imran Khan had inaugurated Lahore Technopolis, a special technology zone, to create jobs and boost Pakistan’s tech exports.
Rupee further strengthens against greenback, closes at 175.92
The rupee appreciated as much as 175.5 in intra-day trading but ended with clipped gains
Karachi: Pakistan's rupee shown strength against the US dollar on Monday to close at 175.92 in the inter-bank market.
The recovery was supported by a weak dollar demand for import payments and exporters' forward selling of the greenback.
The rupee appreciated as much as 175.5 in intra-day trading but ended with clipped gains.
According to the State Bank of Pakistan, the rupee finished with a gain of 0.09% or 15 paisas day-on-day against the US dollar.
Under-19 World Cup: Pakistan to take on Zimbabwe today
Pakistan is the third most successful side after India and Australia in the ICC U19 Cricket World Cup
Trinidad and Tobago: Pakistan will play their first match of the tournament against Zimbabwe in the ICC Men’s U19 Cricket World Cup West Indies 2022 on Monday at the Diego Martin Sporting Complex in Trinidad and Tobago.
Pakistan will then meet Afghanistan on Thursday at the Brian Lara Cricket Ground, while their last Group C fixtures will be against Papua New Guinea (PNG) on Saturday at the Queens Park Oval.
Pakistan is the third most successful side after India and Australia in the ICC U19 Cricket World Cup, which was launched in 1988 before becoming a biennial event in 1998.
Pakistan have won titles in 2004 and 2006, finished runners-up thrice in 1988, 2010 and 2014, and achieved third positions in 2000, 2008, 2018 and 2020.
Squad: Qasim Akram (captain, Central Punjab), Abdul Faseeh (Northern), Abbas Ali (Khyber Pakhtunkhwa), Ahmed Khan (Khyber Pakhtunkhwa), Ali Asfand (Central Punjab), Arham Nawab (Central Punjab), Awais Ali (Central Punjab), Faisal Akram (Southern Punjab), Haseebullah (wicketkeeper, Balochistan), Irfan Khan Niazi (Central Punjab), Maaz Sadaqat (Khyber Pakhtunkhwa), Mehran Mumtaz (Northern), Mohammad Shehzad (Southern Punjab), Rizwan Mehmood (Sindh) and Zeeshan Zameer (Sindh)
Traveling reserves: Ghazi Ghori (wicketkeeper, Sindh), Mohammad Zeeshan (Central Punjab).
17 Jan - v Zimbabwe - Diego Martin Sporting Complex.
20 Jan - v Afghanistan - Brian Lara Cricket Ground.
22 Jan - v PNG - Queens Park Oval.
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