The tech giant has received a permit to test self-driving cars in California.
The California Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) has released an updated list of companies with the ability to test autonomous vehicles in the state, and at the bottom of that new list is Apple, Inc. Over the last couple years, there have been plenty of rumors of Apple wanting to get involved in the automotive market, but last year it was reported the company had abandoned plans to bring its own car to market. Instead, Apple will focus on automonous driving technology, similar to tech rival Google.
The California DMV confirmed to TechCrunch that Apple has been issued an autonomous vehicle test permit and the permit covers three 2015 Lexus RX 450h test vehicles and six drivers. The Lexus RX 450h is also the vehicle Google has used to test its self-driving technology.
It’s likely we won’t see a self-driving Apple test car immediately on roadways, but it’s just a matter of time before the company starts real-world testing. Like other companies with an autonomous vehicle permit in California, Apple will have to submit reports that include a log of every instance where a human driver had to take over during testing. Since those reports are public, we’ll learn more about Apple’s self-driving efforts when they get published.
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