A new report from Business Insider is taking a closer look at where the Apple self-driving car technology stands in comparison to Google and other competitors.
And what was originally envisioned as a standalone car has morphed into something different:
According to the source that Business Insider spoke with, Apple is creating its autonomous systems with an eye to the ride-sharing and ride-hailing market but that Apple has no plans at this point to go it alone and try to become the next Uber.
“Even if they have this [autonomous vehicle] specialty, and they get to a mature point on it, they don’t have the operations expertise. It’s the same thing that Waymo is facing,” this person said.
Apple already invested $1 billion in Chinese ride hailing service Didi Chuxing. And according to Business Insider, the company would consider some type of partnership with Uber once the company hires a new CEO and rebuilds its reputation after sexual harassment scandals.
But Apple apparently has some catching up to do when compared to competitors:
The development of Apple’s autonomous driving technology is at about the stage where Google’s self-driving car project “was three years ago,” according to a person who has seen Apple’s tech and is familiar with the technology of several other autonomous car front runners.
“Apple is just trying to play catch up,” this person told Business Insider.
A number of other companies are already exploring self-driving car technology including General Motors, Tesla, and others.