Science

Apple now has 55 self-driving cars in California

Apple now has 55 self-driving cars in California

Apple is said to employ 83 drivers for its fleet, far less than the 407 of GM or even the 338 Waymo drivers with approved permits. According to the DMV figure, Apple has bigger self-driving auto fleet in California than Waymo, Toyota, BMW and many more that has makes it the second largest fleet in the state. The recent fatal accident involving one of Uber's self-driving prototypes - apparently due to misaligned software - couldn't be stopped by the test driver in time. In April 2017, Apple had just three vehicles registered with the DMV. Waymo, for instance, has hundreds of autonomous vehicles being tested in Arizona.

Apple's 55-vehicle fleet is the second largest in California, behind only Cruise, a self-driving company owned by GM, which sports a 104-strong fleet. Waymo, for example, used to have over 100 self-driving cars in the state before moving part of its fleet to Arizona and MI, where additional testing is now taking place. Apple may have more self-driving cars than Waymo in California, but Waymo likely has more overall.

Uber left California in late 2016, taking its 16 vehicles with it, after the California DMV threatened to revoke its vehicle registrations.

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With a new permit and expanded fleet, things are finally starting to look up for Apple after years of hardship.

This indicates a margin of error that's worth considering before rushing into fully self-driving trials; before the public can accept autonomous cars as a reliable alternative, companies need to gain its trust.

Chief Executive Officer at Apple, Tim Cook called self-driving a core technology that we view as very important.