China’s Waymo rival quietly launched an Uber-style app for driverless cars, making it one of the first to do so

Pony.ai, one of China’s most valuable driverless car start-ups, has launched an app that allows users to hail an autonomous taxi, making it one of the first companies to do so.

The app, which was quietly launched in late December, allows a user to hail a self-driving taxi from a pre-set location in Nansha, which is part of Guangzhou in southern China. The car can travel to specific areas that have been set by the company such as its offices or residential areas.

Currently, only employees and a few VIP users are using the app, which is a mini-program built within WeChat, China’s most popular messaging service. Rides are free for now.