It's Official: CEO Cook Confirms Apple Is Developing Driverless Software

CEO Cook Confirms Apple Is Developing Driverless Software

Apple is working on autonomous systems for vehicles, which could then be implemented with the help of car manufacturers.

Apple CEO Tim Cook confirmed Apple's work in the field in an interview with Bloomberg on June 5. In April, the company received a permit to test self-driving cars in California.

"Autonomy is something that's incredibly exciting for us, but we'll see where it will take us. We're not really saying from a product point of view what we'll do,"

Apple's experiments with autonomous vehicles have been codenamed Project Titan, and they may have started around 2014; however, this is the first time their interest in autonomous vehicles has been publicly acknowledged by the company.

Apple's focus appears to be on software, rather than production of its own driverless cars. It also had other ambitions once, according to Bloomberg's anonymous sources. Reports indicated attempts to create its own electric car. But by 2016, Apple scaled down the original 1,000-person team and abandoned efforts at direct vehicle production after multiple setbacks; the remaining team was apparently instructed to refocus on software alone.

Cook called autonomous systems "the mother of all AI projects," and Apple has also shown interest in electric vehicles and in ride-sharing services. That means Apple could go in any, or all, directions in the world of Driverless.

If Apple's history with other forms of software holds out over their history with vehicles themselves, then their presence could make a big shift in the autonomous vehicles industry, and possibly in the speed of autonomous cars becoming available to the public. The announcement at least seems to show more confidence from Apple with their driverless technology.

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Cover image via Tobias Steinert/Pixabay

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