In an age of aerial drones and driver-less cars, Rolls-Royce Holdings Plc is designing unmanned cargo ships.
It’s easy to miss the bigger picture here. With a fully automated unmanned ship you could explore business models that you otherwise would never consider.
For instance, With no humans aboard you could have a ship that is super slow and super energy efficient, it could cast itself out into currents, use a variety of novel locomotive methods in a significantly longer but cheaper journey. With no people aboard to pay, feed, etc, it wouldn’t matter how long it took.
While this is one novel scenario, which probably wouldn’t work for a million reasons, there are probably a hundred more ideas that would work for a automated ship that are currently unfeasible.