Google to profit from self-driving cars by decade's end

Google stands to rev up substantial revenue from self-driving cars.

The search giant is likely to gain whether it creates the hardware for self-driving cars or simply license the necessary software to automakers, Piper Jaffray's Gene Munster said in an investors note released Tuesday. Either way, revenue from this burgeoning sector should start to ramp up for Google before the decade is over.

"We believe the utility of reducing auto deaths and idle time in traffic add up to a $200+ billion opportunity in autonomous vehicle technology," Munster said. And the analyst sees Google as the "best positioned Internet company over the next ten years" to profit from the technology.

outing the benefits of driverless cars, Munster noted a study from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration that cited around 32,000 deaths in 2011 due to car accidents. That number showed a significant drop from prior years, but the analyst clearly believes it could be further reduced through self-driving cars.

Another study from the Texas A&M Transportation Institute found that Americanswasted 5.5 billion hours in 2011 stuck in traffic, resulting in $121 billion in lost time and fuel. Driverless cars could potentially cut down on all those traffic jams...

Read the full story here. Source: CNET