Waymo, a subsidiary of Alphabet (GOOGL.O), has announced its pioneering move to introduce free driverless robotaxi services to the public in Los Angeles, starting from Thursday onwards. This groundbreaking initiative follows the company’s recent approval from the California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) to launch its Waymo One ride-hailing program in Los Angeles and nearby cities such as those near San Francisco.

The announcement positions Waymo at the forefront of autonomous vehicle technology, outpacing its competitor, Cruise, owned by General Motors (GM.N). Cruise is currently under scrutiny following an incident where one of its driverless cars was involved in an accident, dragging a pedestrian 20 feet.

Waymo’s driverless services will cover an expansive area of 63 square miles, stretching from Santa Monica to downtown Los Angeles. Initially, rides will be offered at no cost as the company aims to onboard over 50,000 eager individuals from its LA waitlist. Moreover, temporary codes will be distributed at local events throughout the city to further encourage public participation.

In a statement released via a blog post, Waymo expressed its commitment to gradually expanding its operations in Los Angeles and transitioning to paid services in the coming weeks. This move marks a significant milestone in the company’s mission to revolutionize transportation through autonomous technology.

Additionally, Waymo has already initiated autonomous services for its employees in Austin, Texas, marking the fourth city where its ride-hailing services have been introduced. Following its success in San Francisco, Phoenix, and now Los Angeles, the company plans to extend its Waymo One services to the broader public in Austin later this year, further solidifying its position as a leader in the autonomous vehicle industry.