Uber and Waymo Agree to Settle Case Involving Uber's Alleged Theft of Self-Driving Technology

Discussion in 'iOS Blog Discussion' started by MacRumors, Feb 9, 2018.

  1. MacRumors macrumors bot

    MacRumors

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    Over the past five days, Uber and Waymo have been entangled in a court case over Waymo's allegations that Uber stole its self-driving LiDAR system. Today, the two companies have announced that they reached a settlement agreement, under which Uber will pay Waymo a 0.34 equity stake, "amounting to about $245 million at Uber's recent $72 billion valuation" (via CNBC).

    Additionally, Uber has agreed that it will not incorporate Waymo's self-driving technology into any of its own hardware or software. Alongside the settlement, Uber CEO Dara Khosrowshahi said in a letter that the company "does not believe that any trade secrets made their way from Waymo to Uber," nor that Waymo's tech was used by Uber in any way, but expressed regret for the ongoing trial over the past year and the events that led up to it.

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    Waymo's lawsuit concerned Uber and its acquisition of self-driving trucking startup Otto, with Waymo believing that employees at Otto stole information from Alphabet-owned Waymo and shared it with Uber. Despite Khosrowshahi's belief that no such data was seen or used by Uber, the company appears ready to put the legal battle behind it through the settlement and payment to Waymo.

    As the fight between the two companies stretched throughout last year, Waymo began a self-driving car test in Phoenix, Arizona, which eventually expanded to testing an autonomous ride-hailing service with no safety drivers. With its fleet of more than 600 minivans, Waymo is considered one of the leaders in the field of self-driving technology, which Apple is now attempting to catch up with through "accelerating" its self-driving efforts in California.

    Article Link: Uber and Waymo Agree to Settle Case Involving Uber's Alleged Theft of Self-Driving Technology
     
  2. Bryan Bowler macrumors 68040

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    Uber is still cleaning up the mess left behind by Travis Kalanick...
     
  3. mwd25 macrumors regular

    mwd25

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    I suspected all along there really wasnt any case here. The judge saw this coming as well. Waymo just didnt have any provable damages. It was like, they were suing on principle. Also seemed like the documents that were "stolen" were taken on principle as well. As if, this is all MY WORK, that I invested my life in for the past few years so by god I'm taking it.
    Oh, well its not your work its ours as you worked for us at the time.
    Well, screw you, Im taking it and you cant stop me.
    We are suing your new employer!!!
    Good luck!!!! Prove they not only had access to MY WORK, (a.k.a. your intellectual property) and while your at it, prove they used it too!!!!
    And thats were their case just fell apart. Easily predicted. I think if Uber wasnt dealing with such a god awful public perception of their company they probably wouldnt have even settled.
     
  4. fairuz macrumors 68000

    fairuz

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    #4
    I've heard of a lot of cases where employees change jobs and have their new company sued just because of that, as if you're not allowed to change jobs. I hope this isn't one of those cases.
     
  5. 69Mustang macrumors 603

    69Mustang

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    Based on all of the reporting out there, your version is very inaccurate. Based on Uber forking over .34% to settle, your version is inaccurate. The former CEO's behavior no doubt contributed to the willingness of Uber to settle. Levandowski's activities before leaving Google screwed Uber to an extent. Part of the reason Uber told him to kick rocks.
     
  6. thisisnotmyname macrumors 68000

    thisisnotmyname

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    I heard the trial was going horribly for Waymo, not surprised to hear settlement.
     
  7. 69Mustang macrumors 603

    69Mustang

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    Where'd you hear that? I heard the exact opposite. I have been following/not following this over at Ars.
     
  8. DeepIn2U macrumors 603

    DeepIn2U

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    #8
    This is definitely not one of those cases. The cover up of information soon would've came out ... admission of guilt to pay Waymo and CEO communicating to parent company Alphabet along with a public apology and promise not to use Waymo's technology.

    Does this mean Uber self-driving endeavors are to be scrapped and started from scratch just to be safe?
    How does Uber really know what tech Waymo uses and does not use in order to avoid it in the future? I thought ONLY the judge has those full details?

    I have a feeling this isn't over just yet.

    And why the hell is Apple still going for self driving - when Maps still needs some serious work. Siri needs work. Unless this is just smokescreen to improve maps and safety (more like extending Do Not Disturb for driving in 2017) then it's a LOT of money and resources completely wasted. I don't see the iPhone being the main source of maps, safety and automomous driving for new cars. not with all the investment so many car manufacturers are already doing.
     
  9. thisisnotmyname macrumors 68000

    thisisnotmyname

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    I read and enjoy articles on Ars quite a bit however they are anything but a neutral arbiter of information. They have a definite slant to their reporting and when it comes to Uber they are decided against the organization. I would take anything they write about the company with a couple pounds of salt.

    In any case, I'd been following the trial from several sources leading up to the settlement. Here's one public source I had read prior to that announcement...

    https://www.theverge.com/2018/2/8/16993208/waymo-v-uber-trial-trade-secrets-lidar
     
  10. 69Mustang macrumors 603

    69Mustang

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    Yeah, I don't get "horribly" from what I just read. In fact, it's seems to me that the 2/3rd's that was rightfully under seal probably lead to this settlement moving forward. Waymo probably realized they weren't going to get as much as they wanted and Uber probably realized they were going to have to pay more than they wanted. It's just my opinion, but I think Uber clearly saw they weren't going to win and coughing up .34% willingly is better than jury damages.
     
  11. thisisnotmyname macrumors 68000

    thisisnotmyname

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    I'd think it was more about risk mitigation. Less than 10% and all stock to not risk a jury. In any case, 2/3 is 30 minutes to explain eight trade secrets supposedly worth $2.6BB in damages. About 3.5 minutes per technology (plus cross). No way.
     

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