Sources said, the company has been working on a driverless vehicle project for several years and has developed on its own most of the necessary software, underlying processors and artificial intelligence algorithms needed for such a sophisticated system.
Apple has been testing its robotaxi technology on public roads in California since 2017. The first version of its test cars, modified Lexus SUVs, used a lidar stack made up of off-the-shelf parts, though this has become a more bespoke effort recently.
Experts says, Apple is looking to outside vendors to supply critical hardware for a planned autonomous vehicle. The laser sensor technology is used by many top-tier players hoping to commercialize driverless vehicles, including Google parent Alphabet Inc.’s Waymo unit and General Motors Co.’s Cruise division. Earlier, Nissan had refuted a report that said it was in talks with Apple for a tie-up for its self-driving car project.
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