Digital Living

Apple, Now In The Self-Driving Cars Race

Self-driving cars, a modern day evolution that will redefine the whole industry, is likely to become increasingly more saturated and competitive after Apple’s inclusion in the market. As the grapevine has it, Apple, which has already reshaped the culture of communication with its iPhone may try to transform transportation, too.

California Department of Motor Vehicles has awarded permit to the company for testing its self-driving cars and its subsequent technology on public roads. This has definitely put an end to the long speculation of whether Apple is becoming a part of the crowded field, with the official announcement a few days back.

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The permit allows Apple to include three vehicles all 2015 Lexus RX 450 hybrid SUVs and six individual drivers. The law of California states clearly that people should be present in the self-driven cars to take control in case of any unforeseen events.

Though Apple has joined the ever contested market but the tech giant has been extremely discreet about its future intentions. Statement released by Apple’s director of product integrity, Steve Kenne, a former Ford Motor executive, notified federal regulators of the company’s interest in self-driving cars.

“There are many potential applications for these technologies, including the future of transportation.” 

Apple adamantly believes that self-driven cars would ease congestion, save thousands of lives annually due to drunk drivers, preventing a lot of crashes in the process. The company has also been looking for a new market with a potential gap to invest and milk money for a while now. Self-driving cars could prove to be a lucrative venture for Apple in the long run, which would diversify its portfolio as well.

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With iPod being the last recognized breakthrough product of Apple, debuting in 2010, there hasn’t been a new product in market since. This has given rise to a 3 year sales slump. Although, Apple’s overall popularity has somewhat covered for its downfall, but has raised serious questions on Apple’s trend setting ability, especially after the demise of its co-founder Steve jobs in 2011.

With the launch of its self driving cars, Apple will be in direct competition with Ford, General Motors, BMW, VolkswagenTesla and with its arch rival Google. All these companies already have California permits to test self- driving cars.

image: Flickr User / Andy_hero

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