After a feverishemployment spree last year for what is widely seen as a race to manufacture the firstcommerciallyavailable self-driving car, Apple appears to be in the midst of downsizing employees. Several workers were laid off as the companyshelved some units in this super shrouded initiative named as Project Titan. Now, new informationreveals further details to the issue.
Apple’s self-driving car ambition seemed to have hit an obstacle when Steve Zadesky, the project’steam leader, quit the company. Bob Mansfield, the long-time Apple adviser, succeeded him in July and this supposedly marked the shift of focus from the development of a self-driving car to just building components, such as anautonomous driving system or software, which Tech Times previously reported.
The report was in-line to the information regarding Dan Dodge’s recent employment by Apple. He was an outstanding Blackberry talent known for his job as head of that company’s automotive software division.
The several employee departures do not imply that Apple is fully turning its back from developing its own self-driving car. The company is still maintaining a stable of engineers working on car design, which is aimed to be released by 2020, according to Bloomberg. This includes the group of battery engineers Apple allegedly smuggled from A123 Systems LLC. This move is part of an initiative to consider other sources of revenue as the iPhone — the company’s main product — is experiencing a declining demand.
Currently, Google and Tesla remains as the top players in the self-driving car industry. With the recent changes at Apple, it seems that these companies would be alleviated. Some experts believe that Project Titan could outshine its competitors’ technologies, which have been in development for years now. Google has already recorded 1.5 million miles of self-driven tests for its prototype while Tesla already has an operating autopilot system in some of its cars.