Apple’s fleet of self-driving vehicles has nearly doubled this year

“Apple doesn’t appear to be slowing down on its mysterious self-driving car technology testing,” Zac Hall reports for Electrek. “As noted in a new report on Uber’s fatal accident involving an autonomous vehicle, the Financial Times includes new data on how many self-driving cars Apple may be testing in California.”

“Based on figures provided by the Department of Motor Vehicles in California, Apple now has permits to test a total of 45 self-driving vehicles on public roads in its home state,” Hall reports. “That number is up from 27 just a few months ago and just three to start almost a year ago.”

“As FT highlights, Apple’s permit number not only shows that it is ramping up its autonomous vehicle technology testing in recent months by expanding its fleet,” Hall reports, “but 45 permits also tops Tesla’s 39 permits and Uber’s 29 permits.”

Read more in the full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: Whatever Apple comes up with, we hope it’s able to be protected from being knocked off half-assedly by some random chaebol and/or clueless nerd-fest for a change.

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Apple scales back its ambitions for a self-driving car – August 23, 2017
Apple’s ‘Project Titan’ remains as fuzzy as ever – June 14, 2017
Tim Cook says Apple is focusing on an autonomous car system; does not rule out making own vehicles – June 13, 201
How Apple is training testers for self-driving Apple Car – April 24, 2017
Apple permit reveals self-driving car testers include NASA roboticists – April 24, 2017
Apple + satellites = ? – April 22. 2017
Why Apple may be interested in space satellites – April 21, 2017
Apple’s self-driving car test program revealed in new document – April 21, 2017
Analyst: Apple ‘almost certainly’ exploring making a whole car but there’s a big challenge – April 18, 2017
Right now, the ‘Apple Car’ is a 2015 Lexus RX 450h SUV – April 17, 2017
Gene Munster on Apple Car: Exploration does not mean a product comes to market – April 17, 2017
Apple’s Project Titan: California makes it official – April 17, 2017
Why you should get your self-driving car from Apple – April 17, 2017
Apple secures permit to test autonomous vehicles – April 15, 2017
Apple’s letter to the U.S. NHTSA reveals 30-year Detroit veteran on its stealth ‘Project Titan’ team – December 8, 2016
Apple files patent for autonomous vehicle collision avoidance system – December 8, 2016
Apple letter all but confirms plans for self-driving cars and commitment to privacy – December 5, 2016
Apple drops hints about autonomous-vehicle project in letter to U.S. transportation regulators – December 3, 2016
It’s not McLaren Racing, but McLaren Applied Technologies, that’s the apple of Apple’s eye – September 23, 2016
Apple-target McLaren is a tech company disguised as a carmaker – September 22, 2016
Supercar-maker McLaren says not in discussion with Apple ‘in respect of any potential investment’ – September 22, 2016
Apple in talks to acquire British supercar maker McLaren – September 21, 2016
Apple in talks to acquire electric vehicle-maker Lit Motors – September 21, 2016


  1. Twice as likely to kill a pedestrian as the human “safety driver” sleeps.

    I predict that when you remove the auto accidents directly caused by first year drivers, drugs, alcohol, and cell phones, human driven vehicles today ON AVERAGE are as safe as automated driving systems for the next two decades.

    The only ways this would not hold true is if the automated car stopped and slowed to a crawl for every little thing, or if automated roadways were restricted to all automated cars only. Otherwise they would have to be slower and very very expensive to be “safer”. And the tiny numbers of super expensive automated cars that trickle onto public roads will only appear statisically safer because they are operated by professionals with an unreported amount of human override, in places that are familiar to the operators, in benign smooth California roads that are gridlocked and highly refined. Don’t expect the Apple car to tackle winter driving conditions or torrential downpours anytime soon.

    Problem is, you can’t pry cell phones and other addictive substances out of human hands. So human driven cars are statistically about as safe as they are going to be unless better driver training and enforcement happens.

    Apple and the other tech geek companies are barking up the wrong tree. If you want safer cars, don’t turn them into rolling aerospace vehicles. Remove the cell phones and illicit substances.
    If you want fast efficient clean city to city transport, dust off the railway corridors that America abandoned under political pressure from the automakers and Big Oil.

    1. First of all, your “prediction” is actually just speculation. Check the internet for scientific studies, analyses, and data. Relying on your gut is a poor way to govern or make decisions.

      Second, as you point out later in your post, your prediction has no basis in reality because society has been relatively unsuccessful in reducing distracted and impaired driving behaviors. As a result, your final conclusion does not make a lot of sense, because human behavior is difficult and slow to change.

      As far as revitalizing the railway corridors, there are two problems. First, many of them have been dismantled. Heavy freight dominates the remaining rail lines. Second, the rail lines in the U.S. are predominantly old school, slow railways. I can drive much more quickly than Amtrak can take me from Baltimore down through Virginia and into North Carolina.

      If the U.S. were willing to invest major dollars into high-speed rail, then you would have a point. But dusting off the existing railway corridors is not a viable solution.

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