Apple’s Project Titan car resurfaces with bigger sensors

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Apple car
Apple's Lexus has been upgraded with lots of new sensors.
Photo: Idiggapple/Twitter

The self-driving sensors that power Apple’s autonomous car have gotten a significant update since the last time we saw them.

Apple’s self-driving car was recently spotted by the CEO of a self-driving car start-up called Voyage. Co-founder MacCallister Higgins got up close with one of Apple’s Lexus RX450h’s that’s outfitted with a monstrous new sensor array. The short video posted to Twitter shows Apple’s project has made some serious strides in the last few months.

Check it out:

Juicy iPhone 8 leaks and a strange twist for Apple car project, on The CultCast

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Apple Car
Why, I just looove our new Apple car, mummy!
Photo: Mario Klingemann/Flickr CC

This week on The CultCast: Even more juicy details leak on iPhone 8, plus a report says Apple’s keynote reveal is right around the corner. Plus: There’s a strange twist in Apple’s autonomous car project; why the 13-inch MacBook Pro might soon get a lot more horsepower; and stick around for an all-new storytime, where we’ll tell you what it’s like inside the eerie darkness of a total solar eclipse.

Apple autonomous car morphs into self-driving shuttle bus for employees

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Apple's Car
Possibly not coming any time soon.
Photo: Aristomenis Tsirbas/Freelancer

Apple’s secretive “Project Titan” self-driving car project has reportedly switched gears, transforming into an effort to build a self-driving shuttle bus. Called Palo Alto to Infinite Loop, or PAIL, the shuttle would carry Apple employees between buildings.

The project may serve as a test bed for Apple’s autonomous car research. But a customer-focused vehicle built by Apple is for now reportedly out of the question. Instead, Apple’s self-driving technology will likely be used by other carmakers eventually.

Apple spent close to $3 billion on R&D last quarter

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R&D
One of Apple's many R&D centers. (This one is in Japan!)
Photo: Apple

Apple spent a whopping $2.94 billion on research and development last quarter, according to a new filing with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission. The Apple R&D spending represents an increase of 6 percent compared to the same quarter last year.

While Apple keeps its plans close to its chest, it invests a tremendous amount of money on research and development to create the products we’ll be buying a year or more from now.

Apple reportedly working with Chinese firm on electric car battery

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apple car
A rendering of an Apple car.
Photo: Motor1

Apple may be working on a car after all. A partnership between Apple and China’s biggest battery manufacturer is all about developing an electric car battery, according to a new report.

Apple was long rumored to be working on an autonomous vehicle under the code name Project Titan. But recent signals from Cupertino made it look like the tech company was downshifting its automotive ambitions, focusing on software rather than building an actual electric car.

Tim Cook calls self-driving cars ‘mother of all AI problems’

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And here it is in all its glory.
Cook confirms that Apple is interested in autonomous systems for cars.
Photo: Motor1

Tim Cook has shared some details on Apple’s electric car plans, describing self-driving cars as “the mother of all AI projects.”

“We’re focusing on autonomous systems,” Cook said in an interview with Bloomberg Television, which was conducted on June 5, but only published online today. “It’s a core technology that we view as very important … It’s probably one of the most difficult A.I. projects actually to work on.”

Apple’s self-driving car filmed cruising California highway

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lexus
The 2015 Lexus RX450h is Apple's vehicle of choice.
Photo: Lexus

The first video footage of Apple’s self-driving car has already surfaced on the internet, just over a month after the company first received permission to drive on public roads.

Apple’s self-driving car is actually a Lexus RX450h outfitted with sensors powered by Apple’s own autonomous driving software. Video of the car in action reveals Apple’s project is already highway-worthy as the company races to catch up to its competition.

Watch it cruise the road with ease:

Apple wants California to change self-driving car reports

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apple lexus
Apple's self-driving Lexus hits the streets of California.
Photo: Bloomberg

Just weeks after getting its permit to drive self-driving cars on public roads, Apple is already asking the California DMV to change reporting protocol requirements.

Apple sent the DMV a letter today arguing for changes to the rules for “disengagement reporting,” which if successfully implemented, would give the public less information about Apple’s self-driving vehicles.