In June 2017, Apple CEO, Tim Cook confirmed that the company had shelved its plans to build a self-driving car. But now, the company is working on an autonomous shuttle service.
After Cook announced that the project was halted, sources close to the development have spoken to NY Times about the reasons behind the failure of the ambitious project.
Some of the leading employees at Apple wanted to develop a fully autonomous car, whereas others were willing to build a semi-autonomous vehicle. The discussions delayed the project which put Apple behind its main rivals.
The delay in decision ultimately led to the drop of the project. In 2016, Apple was reportedly working on an iCar, codenamed as Project Titan, a self-driving car. The company also failed to close a deal with BMW and Daimler.
But now, Apple is working on an autonomous shuttle service to transport employees between one Apple building to another. The shuttle is likely to be a commercial vehicle manufactured by an automaker.
Apple will use the shuttle vehicle to test the autonomous driving technology. The project is named as PAIL (Palo Alto to Infinite Loop). It will be a crucial testing ground for Apple in real-world conditions.
Apple has downsized its ambitious self-driving car project and is now developing an autonomous driving technology to operate a shuttle service. The rescaled project has put Apple in line with other tech companies such as Waymo.