Apple Hiring Autonomous Vehicle Experts, Including Tesla Engineer Now Working on 'Special Projects'

Discussion in 'MacRumors.com News Discussion' started by MacRumors, Aug 21, 2015.

  1. MacRumors macrumors bot

    MacRumors

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    Apple recently hired a senior engineer from Tesla Motors, presumably to work on its secret car project. As highlighted by Reuters, former Tesla Motors Autopilot Firmware Manager Jamie Carlson's LinkedIn page says he now works at Apple on "Special Projects."

    His profile doesn't go into detail on what he did for Tesla, but he was working on the company's autonomous vehicle firmware project and could be taking on a similar automotive firmware role at Apple.

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    Reuters also points out several other previously unknown hires with similar expertise in autonomous driving, including Megan McClain, a former Volkswagen engineer, Vinay Palakkode, a graduate researcher at Carnegie Mellon University, and Xianqiao Tong, who developed driver assistance systems for NVIDIA.

    On their respecitve LinkedIn pages, McClain is listed as a Mechanical Design Engineer, Palakkode is listed as an engineer working within Apple's Special Projects Group, and Tong is listed as an R&D engineer. Last fall, Apple also hired Sanjai Massey, a Ford engineer who worked on connected and autonomous vehicles, Stefan Weber, a Bosch engineer who worked on driver assistance systems, and Lech Szumilas, a Delphi research scientist with former expertise in autonomous vehicles.

    Rumors have thus far disagreed over whether Apple's secret car project includes self-driving technology, but it's possible the company is exploring multiple avenues of development as the project is still in its early stages. A previous report from Reuters citing a source within the automotive industry suggested Apple was working on a self-driving electric car, but a report from The Wall Street Journal stated a self-driving car was not part of Apple's electric car efforts.

    Apple is said to have more than 200 employees working on the electric car, under the code name "Project Titan." Apple has been heavily recruiting automotive experts over the past several months, with many members on its team coming from companies like Tesla, Ford, GM, MIT Motorsports, Ogin, Autoliv, A123 Systems, General Dynamics, and more.

    High profile hires have included Tesla mechanical engineering manager David Nelson, Tesla senior powertrain test engineer John Ireland, Chrysler Group Senior Vice President Doug Betts, A123 Systems Chief Technology Officer Mujeeb Ijaz, and Paul Furgale, a researcher with a specialization in autonomous vehicles.

    Article Link: Apple Hiring Autonomous Vehicle Experts, Including Tesla Engineer Now Working on 'Special Projects'
     
  2. JonneyGee macrumors 6502

    JonneyGee

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    #2
    "It's not going to happen."
    - Most people discussing Apple Car, 2015
    - Most people discussing Apple Watch, 2010
     
  3. Attirex macrumors 6502a

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  4. CmdrLaForge macrumors 601

    CmdrLaForge

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    #4
    Not sure how I feel about the fact that my favorite computer company enters the automotive space....

    But if you think about it. Even if you buy all of Apples major products today, a MacBook Pro , an iPad, an iPhone you spend a lot less then on a car.
     
  5. k1121j macrumors 6502a

    k1121j

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    #5
    its rather obvious that Apple does not want this as a secret if all these people are posting online what hey are doing
     
  6. Rogifan macrumors Core

    Rogifan

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    #6
    Megan McLain's profile now says:

    Does anyone still think Apple is just working on a supped up CarPlay for existing car makers?
     
  7. nepalisherpa macrumors 68020

    nepalisherpa

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    #7
    Let's hope Apple fixes the map first before integrating that into their autonomous vehicles.

    Before anyone accuses me, I work for a hospital and Apple map still shows a house few miles away when I search for the hospital's address. I have attempted to send update tips to Apple many times in the past years but it is still wrong. Oh well!
     
  8. Rogifan macrumors Core

    Rogifan

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    #8
    They're not though. Most are pretty vague like special projects or mechanical design engineer.
     
  9. kcirtap00 macrumors regular

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    #9
    Just buy Tesla and get it over with. This would be a good purchase unlike Beats.
     
  10. yossi macrumors regular

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    #10
    Whats wrong with buying a company that sells a $4 headphone for $300?
     
  11. Rogifan macrumors Core

    Rogifan

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    #11
    Let's see your $4 headphones. I've got spare change in my pocket to try them out.
     
  12. agsystems macrumors 6502a

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    #12
    The question is Elon willing to sell and for how much. Would Apple be willing to overpaid 50B+ to acquired them?

    Given that development of a new car could take between 5-10 years I think it makes more sense for Apple to start out fresh - it will cost a lot less and they will able build exactly what they want.
     
  13. SAIRUS macrumors 6502a

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    #13
    If its like most apple products, the device will probably have a bad battery... hmm as usual, wait till 2nd gen.
     
  14. xero9 macrumors 6502a

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    #14
    I'll buy a new iPhone yearly, but a car? I'm not that rich..
     
  15. LizKat macrumors 601

    LizKat

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    #15
    Yeah but i paid $2400 for my first Mac and $1700 for my first Volkswagen.
     
  16. CmdrLaForge macrumors 601

    CmdrLaForge

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    #16
    Very funny. I believe you but still
     
  17. LizKat macrumors 601

    LizKat

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    #17
    I know. It's different today. I have a hard time thinking about an Apple car too.

    Way WAY outta my (retirement) pay grade, for sure. :)
     
  18. ronntaylor macrumors regular

    ronntaylor

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    #18
    Elon Musk would never sell. And it wouldn't be a great fit if he did. Too many egos and too expensive. Besides, Apple can continue to poach engineers and other key personnel (from Tesla and others) and work on their own product. It'll be years before we see anything tangible, so there's no rush.
     
  19. ronntaylor macrumors regular

    ronntaylor

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    #19
    Hell, I think my youngest brother paid less than $2K for his last three cars combined. Of course, they lasted as little as you'd expect for dirt cheap purchases.
     
  20. laurim macrumors 68000

    laurim

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    #20
    Go Gophers!!

    The idea of an CAR is interesting but it's very likely going to be out of my price range so I'll just watch for curiosity. I'm 51 and have owned TWO cars in my lifetime. Bought the first one new and the current one was less than a year old and then I use them until they die (current car is 16 years old and still works/looks great). If I did buy an CAR, it would probably be the last car I own so it would have to be great ;)
     
  21. saintforlife macrumors 65816

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    #21
    I am skipping the first gen Apple Car. Everyone knows the 'S' upgrade cycle is where it's at.
     
  22. LizKat macrumors 601

    LizKat

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    #22
    I be waitin' on the 5C...
     
  23. ArtOfWarfare macrumors G3

    ArtOfWarfare

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    #23
    According to Musk, the total battery output of all the factories in the world is enough to build half a million electric cars per year. Every year, 50 M cars are made.

    Once Gigafactory 1 is operational, the world battery output will double and we'll have enough for 1 M electric cars, half of all of them (the batteries, that is) being made by Tesla.

    So if Apple wants to be just 1% of all cars (what their initial goal with the iPhone was), they'll need to make half a million per year. Where will they be getting the batteries from? Tesla.

    This is why I would invest heavily in Tesla if I had money that I could afford to invest. Many companies are talking about mass producing electric cars, but only one company, Tesla, is talking about mass producing batteries for electric cars. So whether the Tesla Model 3 is the car that everyone buys or the Chevy Bolt or the Apple Car or any other electric car, Tesla wins by being the company that provides everyone with their $20,000 batteries.
     
  24. neutralguy macrumors 6502a

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    #24
    Hiring the engineers is not enough if there is no good direction or a leader who knows how to make the car.
     
  25. noveneerhere macrumors member

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    #25
    Could still be CarPlay because at Volkswagen she worked on "the integration (mechanical, electronics, and firmware) of the center screen" and some Industrial Designers work only with software. (IxD)
     

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147 August 21, 2015