Apple Seen Testing Its Self-Driving Car Platform


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While Apple remains secretive about its self-driving car project, the tech giant can’t hope to test its driverless platform on public roads without somebody eventually noticing it. That seems to be the case when someone posted over Twitter a video on what many believe to be Apple’s test vehicle for the project.

The video was captured by MacCallister Higgins who should know a thing or two about autonomous vehicles being one of the co-founders of the self-driving startup Voyage, The Verge reported. The clip shows a Lexus SUV with something mounted on its roof that looks like a cargo carrier. However, a closer inspection would reveal it to be a rather bulky assembly of various sensors. While they are no doubt necessary for the car to steer itself, Higgins has named the test car “The Thing” in reference to the bulky package.

Of course, Apple has not offered any comment on the sighting, keeping up its secretive stance on the self-driving car project. However, observers noted that the vehicle seen in the video is consistent with Apple’s vehicle of choice in the previous testing. According to BGR, Apple has allegedly been using Lexus SUVs for the secretive project. In addition, the company has admitted that it secured a permit from the California DMV for testing the technology on actual road conditions.

The self-driving cars segment is considered a new frontier in the automotive industry. Understandably, various automakers, equipment suppliers and big technology firms such as Apple and Google are currently in a technological race to be the top dog in this new arena. Once fully developed, the technology could eliminate human error, one of the leading causes of car crashes which claim over a million lives each year.

However, you are not likely to see a self-driving car sporting an Apple logo anytime soon. Apparently, the company has scratched ambitions of building its own car from scratch opting instead to focus on autonomous systems that it can sell to automakers.

[Featured Image via YouTube]
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