Apple poaches Waymo engineer for self-driving project
Sheetal Sukhija - Monday 18th June, 2018
Jamie Waydo is a prominent engineer from Waymo’s autonomous vehicle unit
Waydo will now join Apple’s self-driving project, codenamed Titan
The news came as a sign that Apple might be close to delivering a prototype
CALIFORNIA, U.S. - Indicating that it might be getting serious about achieving its first autonomous vehicle prototype, Apple has reportedly poached a prominent senior self-driving car engineer Jaime Waydo from Alphabet’s Waymo unit.
The senior self-driving car engineer oversaw systems engineering at Alphabet’s Waymo autonomous vehicle unit - being in charge of the crucial process of ensuring hardware and software work well together.
She is also credited with having helped make key decisions about when to remove human safety drivers from the company's test fleet in Arizona.
Before joining Waymo, Waydo was a longtime engineer at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory.
So far, despite several reports revealing its plans, the iPhone maker has remained tight-lipped about its progress in the development of self-driving cars.
Previously, Apple CEO Tim Cook has called the company’s secret self-driving project, which is codenamed Titan, as "the mother of all AI projects."
However, Apple has not made any products related to self-driving cars public yet even though it was reported to have obtained permits to test-self driving cars in California.
The company even published research around how self-driving cars could better detect pedestrians and cyclists.
Two months back, Apple confirmed that it had hired John Giannandrea, who previously served as Google's top artificial intelligence executive.
However, reports have also revealed that the company originally planned to create an entire self-driving car, but scaled back its aspirations a few years back.
Apple is believed to be focused on a platform that it can develop and sell to automakers that lack the time, funds or manpower to develop an independent system.
Meanwhile, Waydo’s specific role in the company has not been revealed yet.
Her appointment was first reported in The Information.
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