A prototype of Google's own self-driving vehicle is seen during a media preview of Google's current autonomous vehicles in Mountain View, California September 29, 2015.  REUTERS/Elijah Nouvelage

Google plans to make its self-driving cars unit, which will offer rides for hire, a stand-alone business under its parent company, Alphabet Inc, next year, Bloomberg reported.

The service could be launched in San Francisco and Austin, Texas locations, where it has tested the cars extensively, Bloomberg said, citing a person briefed on the company’s strategy. (bloom.bg/1RRKfH1)

The fleets could be deployed first in confined areas like college campuses, military bases or corporate office parks, Bloomberg reported.

Alphabet declined to comment on the Bloomberg story.

The company said in July it was testing a fleet of 23 specially equipped Lexus prototypes, which had logged more than 1 million test miles.

In June, the company began testing tiny, bubble-shaped self-driving prototype vehicles of its own design on public roads around Mountain View. The company has also started testing self-driving prototypes in Austin.

Alphabet’s pet project of driverless cars started in 2009 and it along with other automakers have said the technology to build self-driving cars should be ready by 2020.


By Adam