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Apple has hired Dan Dodge, the founder of QNX, and one of the premier experts in car software, Bloomberg revealed Thursday in a story about Apple’s car ambitions.
According to reporters Mark Gurman and Alex Webb, Apple is now taking a dual-track approach to its car initiative, “Project Titan,” with the priority now on building self-driving car software rather than a car itself.
The initiative is now prioritizing the development of an autonomous driving system, though it’s not abandoning efforts to designing Apple’s own vehicle. That leaves options open should the company eventually decide to partner with or acquire an established car maker, rather than building a car itself.
Dodge should help with the efforts to build car software. His company was eventually bought by Blackberry, which licensed the software to car companies like Volkswagen and Ford, which used QNX technology in entertainment systems.
Apple has three teams working on its car, a hardware team, a sensors group, and a software team. They now report to Bob Mansfield, a long-time Apple executive, who reports to CEO Tim Cook.
According to the report, Apple is targeting a release as soon as 2020.