Apple Hires Drone and Aviation Law Expert as Washington Lobbyist

MacRumors

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Apple has retained Lisa Ellman, a lawyer specializing in drone and aviation law, as a Washington lobbyist, reports Bloomberg.

Ellman, a partner at law firm Hogan Lovells, leads her firm's Unmanned Aircraft Systems practice and also co-founded the Commercial Drone Alliance. She has been doing lobbying work for Apple since December.

A DJI Mavic Pro drone​

Apple since 2016 has been using drones for data collection purposes to boost the quality of Apple Maps. Apple's drones are able to capture and update mapping data faster than the LiDAR-equipped minivans that it has used to collect mapping information since 2015.

Apple in 2018 was also a participant in a pilot program that allows the company to operate drones in ways restricted by the U.S. Federal Aviation Administration. Apple partnered with the North Carolina Department of Transportation to use drones to capture aerial mapping data.

Bloomberg suggests that Apple's new lobbying efforts indicate a new push into the growing drone field. Apple also has a team working on satellites that Ellman could potentially assist with when it comes to regulations.

In addition to employing drones for mapping purposes, Apple also sells popular drones from DJI in its Apple retail stores and on its website.

Article Link: Apple Hires Drone and Aviation Law Expert as Washington Lobbyist
 

Jefe's MacAir

macrumors 6502a
Nov 21, 2010
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I'm wondering if this is related to the mysterious drone sighting in NE Colorado, SE Nebraska and NE Kansas recently. It's been quite a display to say the least.

The $$$ involved in the drones involved could be explained by Apple's stash. Everyone suspected Amazon and maybe Google but I don't think anyone thought of Apple.
 

Peel

macrumors 6502a
Aug 30, 2004
573
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Seattle
With the news earlier this week that the US government will stop using all civilian drones produced by Chinese companies, if Apple plans to come out with a drone device of their own, the timing to hire a lobbyist is spot on.
 

wigby

macrumors 68000
Jun 7, 2007
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I still don’t understand how bribing, I mean lobbying is legal. That’s just a fancy word for corruption. It’s better than narcos giving you a visit I suppose
Because it's not illegal to offer a bribe. It might be illegal to accept but how can you prove it? Just because someone accepts money or favors and also agrees with the one that gave it to them does not make them corrupt automatically.
 

bketchum

macrumors regular
Jan 15, 2003
179
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Grand Portage, Minnesota
In the book trilogy The Neanderthal Parallax, everyone has personal drones circling around, quietly out of site, recording everything, and beaming it all to the cloud. It's a kind of near-future story where you don't have to get your phone out to take pictures or record video. It's done for you every second of the day.
 

EdT

macrumors 68000
Mar 11, 2007
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Omaha, NE
I'm wondering if this is related to the mysterious drone sighting in NE Colorado, SE Nebraska and NE Kansas recently. It's been quite a display to say the least.

The $$$ involved in the drones involved could be explained by Apple's stash. Everyone suspected Amazon and maybe Google but I don't think anyone thought of Apple.
i live in Nebraska, and the drones are mentioned at least 4 or 5 times a week. Some estimates are that the drones are much larger than average consumer drones, with an up to 6 ft wingspan. But i haven’t seen anything that actually confirms that statement.
 

PickUrPoison

macrumors 603
Sep 12, 2017
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Because it's not illegal to offer a bribe. It might be illegal to accept but how can you prove it? Just because someone accepts money or favors and also agrees with the one that gave it to them does not make them corrupt automatically.
Oh it’s illegal alright. Maybe not in your country but in the US you can get yourself quite a lot of trouble just by offering a bribe (especially to a public official).

Even in this day and age, laws matter.
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I'm thinking these are not the reasons behind this decision. 🤔
Satellites, huh? Hmmm could be interesting...
 
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bobob

macrumors 68040
Jan 11, 2008
3,008
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This is clearly the prelude to Apple's next game-changer:

A much larger iPhone that doesn't weigh down your pocket because it flys around following you.
 

TheFluffyDuck

macrumors 6502a
Jul 26, 2012
524
1,353
Bureaucrats that have never ever flown a drone are killing the hobby. I fly in and around trees in parks, if a plane is sharing the same airspace as me, it has WAY bigger problems than my 500g drone.

Now you cant fly a 500 g drone within hundreds of metres of people or property. But driving a 3-ton car within meters of pedestrians at a similar speed? No worries mate. 🤡🤡
 
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