Apple Has Bigger Autonomous Car Fleet Than Uber, Tesla, Google

Apple Has Bigger Autonomous Car Fleet Than Uber, Tesla, Google

It has been confirmed by the Department of Motor Vehicles in California that ever since Apple received a permit to test self-driving cars on public roads in the state, the size of its fleet has gradually grown from 27 in January this year to 55 in May. General Motors' Cruise Automation division has 104 cars and 407 drivers, according to the DMV figures. At this stage, Apple hasn't been authorized to test self-driving cars independent of human supervision; for that, the company will need to submit a separate permit to the DMV - something Waymo did last month.

Apple's autonomous vehicle program is one of the biggest known secrets in the tech industry. The next step, of course, is to test these sensor-equipped vehicles without drivers. Waymo, for example, used to have over 100 self-driving cars in the state before moving part of its fleet to Arizona and MI, where additional testing is now taking place. MacReports first reported some of the new details of Apple's fleet.

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We do know that the autonomous auto scene is heating up - Tesla and Drive.Ai are lagging behind Apple, but fellow California-native GM Cruise leads the pack with 104 vehicles with self-driving capacity.

The company's fleet is now made up of Lexus RX450h SUVs, each outfitted with Apple's proprietary technology. Apple's self-driving auto program is still a mystery, but it appears to be centered around testing and collecting data for self-driving software, instead of a complete vehicle. "It's probably one of the most hard AI projects actually to work on", Cook said last summer. The recent fatal accident involving one of Uber's self-driving prototypes - apparently due to misaligned software - couldn't be stopped by the test driver in time.

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