Do you remember that system for autonomous carswhere Tim Cook revealed that Apple is working? Well, now some sources have told the New York Times The company would be developing a vehicle to transport employees between Ma's various buildings with details of what the transition from the idea of a complete vehicle (with Ma's hardware and software) to a self-managed vehicle system would have been.
The latest plans, according to five anonymous sources, point out that Apple is developing what they call PAIL (Palo Alto to Infinite Loop): an autonomous vehicle that would drive employees by the various Ma buildings in the Silicon Valley area.
While the vehicle itself would be from an established manufacturer, the system responsible for self-driving would be Apple's own; In this way, the company can offer a simpler way to transport its employees and at the same time test the software for wider use in the future. Regarding the name, John Gruber suggested that he is a bit outdated, since it does not include Apple Park.
Since the buzz surrounding a possible Apple car began, rumors have been taking different forms until culminating in Cook's confirmation when we heard something quite different from the initial news of such a “Project Titan” in 2014.
The sources, this time, stated that the company's plans did change over time. The project team would have been made up of several Apple veterans, as well as some hired engineers who had experience building cars and not just software for a standalone vehicle. That is, everything to be more the face of the company, which prefers to control all aspects of a final product.
The sources said the project team had thought of several options, such as a vehicle with motorized doors that would open and close silently, without steering wheel or accelerator, screens including augmented reality / virtual, a more discreet LIDAR sensor on the top of the car and even Different wheels.
Apple even tried to reinvent the wheel. A team inside the Titan investigated the possibility of using round spherical wheels like a globe instead of the traditional circular ones because the spherical wheels could allow the car to make a better lateral movement.
Over time, the plans would have become more blurred, with delays and some leadership problems. The sources even quoted the project as having problems because of its magnitude and lack of a clearly defined vision of what Apple wanted in a vehicle.
Among the problems, employees complained that priorities recurringly changed, timeframes were “arbitrary and unrealistic” and they had not yet decided whether the car would be completely autonomous (idea supported by Jony Ive) or whether the driver could, Anytime, take back control of the vehicle that would be ideal for Steve Zadesky, responsible for the team that left the Apple last year. Ive, as always, wanted "the company to rethink the automotive experience."
In addition, the language of the software (supposedly a "carOS") would also have come into debate: some suggested Swift while others suggested C ++. However, as John Gruber pointed out in Daring fireballMost likely the "good old" C language would be used (preferably something like MISRA C).
But as we already told here, the rest of the story: Bob Mansfield took over the project, several people were laid off and the company focused on a system of autonomous cars.
Currently, we have seen a Lexus RX450h being tested by the company, traveling the streets of California and we will probably see this PAIL now (surely there will be no shortage of news and images when it appears in public).
via The Verge
Update 08/24/2017 at 16:30
According to Business insiderAfter the huge stampede of employees on the autonomous car system team, Apple is hiring again and with a new intention.
Ma's aim now would be for people who have experience in autonomous vehicle software like so many other companies have been in the business for a long time, certainly there is a very fertile ground for good professionals.
In addition, a source told the BI that Apple would be aiming, with its autonomous car system, for the ride-sharing market. However, Ma has no plans to become a Uber, a Lyft or anything; In fact, it is likely to get even closer to Didi Chuxing, a Chinese company in which it has invested about $ 1 billion. Thus, surely she will get more and more information and experience, only then after trying to enter the market once and for all.