Apple is holding active conversations with a variety of different suppliers for LiDAR sensors.
According to Bloomberg, Apple is holding active conversations with a variety of different suppliers for LiDAR sensors for its upcoming electric vehicle. The report says the LiDAR sensors in question are being developed now, but will apparently still be “cutting edge” even in five years’ time, when the Apple Car is rumoured to debut.
“The Cupertino, California-based technology giant is in active talks with a number of potential suppliers for these laser-based sensors that allow a car’s computer to ‘see’ its surroundings, said the people, who asked not to be identified due to the private nature of the discussions. The company has been working on a driverless vehicle project for several years and has developed on its own most of the necessary software, underlying processors and artificial intelligence algorithms needed for such a sophisticated system,” reads the report.
These talks are a sign that Apple has yet to settle on a single supplier, and Bloomberg notes that the company is still considering various options for its LiDAR technology, including what could end up as a heavily customized version of the sensor suite.
The sensors will help the car “see” its surroundings, helping the vehicle in any self-driving situation, staying within lanes, and much more. The vehicle is said to lean into its smarts, so these self-driving scenarios are expected and these sensors would be required for any advanced features.
While LiDAR is often discussed in the context of autonomous vehicles, the tech has broader applications for the automotive industry and beyond. Apple, for example, is rumored to be including a LiDAR scanner on all new iPhone models moving forward.