Waymo Seeks to Delay Trial in Uber Trade Secrets Lawsuit

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CNET

Waymo, the self-driving car unit of Google parent Alphabet, is asking a federal judge to postpone the trial of a trade secret lawsuit against Uber, citing recently obtained evidence related to the case.

The lawsuit, in which Waymo accuses Uber of stealing secretive self-driving car technology, was scheduled to go to trial on Oct. 10. But Waymo requested a continuance in a motion filed Saturday in a Northern California federal court, saying it needed more time to review evidence recently obtained from the ride-hailing startup.

Central to Waymo’s lawsuit is the claim that a former Google employee, Anthony Levandowski, stole 14,000 “highly confidential” files before he left in January 2016 to found his own self-driving truck startup. Uber bought that startup, Otto, for $680 million in August 2016.

Levandowski helped develop Waymo’s lidar technology, a key component in self-driving cars that lets vehicles “see” their surroundings and detect traffic, pedestrians, bicyclists and other objects. Waymo claims the allegedly stolen information has benefited Uber as it has developed its own driverless car tech.

Waymo had for months been seeking a 2016 due diligence report Uber completed before purchasing Otto, hoping it contained information that would bolster its case. A federal judge ruled Wednesday that Uber must hand over the so-called Stroz Report to Waymo.