Since the 1920s, when the first radio-controlled vehicles were built, we’ve seen a significant improvement in autonomous vehicle technology. We will see pretty autonomous electric cars driven by embedded circuits on the roads in the coming decades. By the 1960s, self-driving vehicles with identical electronic navigation systems were on the market. Various semi-autonomous features, such as lane-keeping, automatic braking, and adaptive cruise control, are based on these systems. The future of autonomous vehicles will be comprehensive network-driven systems combined with vision-guided features. Most companies are expected to deploy fully autonomous cars by the end of the decade. Autonomous cars can usher in a new age of safe and convenient transportation (1).
Consumers all over the world are ecstatic about the introduction of self-driving vehicles for public transportation. A self-driving car can function independently of human control and without the need for human intervention. Modern autonomous vehicles can sense their surroundings, identify various types of objects they encounter, and interpret sensory data to determine suitable navigation paths while adhering to traffic laws. Significant progress has been made in providing an adequate answer to unexpected situations when a backlash in the vehicular structures or a medium in the external environment does not act as predicted by internal prototypes (2).
Since the launch of the vision-guided Mercedes-Benz robotic van in 1980, significant developments in autonomous car technology have been made, with the main emphasis being on vision-guided systems using LIDAR, radar, GPS, and computer vision. This evolved into autonomous technology, such as adaptive cruise control, lane parking, and steer assist, commonplace in modern automobiles. (3) According to official predictions from various automotive firms, we will be a part of a future where fully autonomous vehicles are a reality. Modern automakers are actively designing new independent features for their current models. Every day, technological advances in fields such as information technology, communication, data processing, and storage, among others, are not limited to these areas. The lot of self-driving cars is also advancing at a fast pace these days. Segway Incorporated and General Motors collaborated on a two-seat electric vehicle intended primarily for urban environments and could be powered manually or autonomously (4).
Is any techie interested in the future of automobiles and how they can become more efficient and quicker? Public organizations are very optimistic about autonomous vehicles, but they still face various obstacles resulting from their implementation. Autonomous cars have benefits such as high reliability, high speed, lower government expenditure on traffic police, lower automobile insurance costs, less redundant passengers, and so on. However, there are obstacles such as establishing a regulatory structure for autonomous cars and the possibility of criminal and terrorist abuse, to name a few. The automation sector is booming, with many carr rivals taking on the mantle to be the first, but there isn’t even a part of the sector but is making a difference. Apple is coming with their new idea, and it’s going automated. So why are companies like Apple reaching towards this form of tech?
Rise of Automation
Over the last century, automotive innovation has resulted in significant technical advancements, resulting in safer, cleaner, and more affordable cars. However, after Henry Ford introduced the moving assembly line, the bulk of the improvements have been gradual and evolutionary. Now, in the early twenty-first century, the industry appears to be on the verge of a dynamic shift that has the potential to drastically alter not only the competitive environment but also the way we communicate with automobiles and, indeed, the future nature of our roads and towns. When it arrives, the arrival of autonomous or self-driving vehicles will spark the revolution (5).
For centuries, the desire to go wherever we want, whenever we want, has been a powerful market force. And the automobile industry has been and continues to be a vital part of the American economy, hiring 1.7 million people through producers, retailers, and distributors, paying out 500 billion dollars annually, and accounting for roughly 3 percent of GDP. However, mobility is becoming increasingly costly and inefficient. The first is, of course, the overall cost of vehicle ownership, which can push the price of a 21,000 car dollars driven an average of 15,000 miles per year to more than 40,000 dollars over five years for a vehicle that sits idle nearly 22 hours a day (6).
The automotive industry is currently working on sensor-based solutions to boost vehicle safety in speed zones where driver error is most common: lower speeds when caught in traffic and higher rates when driving down a long highway stretch. Advanced Driver Assist Systems (ADAS) combine advanced sensors, including stereo cameras and long- and short-range RADAR with actuators, control units, and integrating software to allow cars to track and respond to their surroundings. Lane-keeping and alarm systems, adaptive cruise control, and backup warnings are examples of ADAS (7) solutions.
Even if there were no existing technical constraints, it would be necessary, if not preferred, to gradually incorporate self-driving capabilities. This will also help vehicle operators and the transportation network and allow customers more time to learn about and trust the technology. With safety-critical systems, there is no space for error. They must perform flawlessly every time; life and death are on the line. Consumers will not relinquish power until they have complete trust in their cars’ safety, durability, and mobile environment. Consumers will have to learn how to use and navigate the latest features as autonomous vehicle technology revolutionizes the driving experience.
A new car isn’t like a new phone in that it can’t be rebooted in the middle of the highway. They’ll have to get used to the vehicle’s features and interface, and even then, they’ll probably have to overcome a psychological barrier before relinquishing control and letting the car move. Consequently, it will be essential to proceed progressively and direct customers along a manageable learning curve. The required learning curve could take the form of new driver education standards and special permits to operate various levels of self-driving vehicles. Connected vehicle technology involves an extensive network of cars with identical, or at least interoperable, communication systems to function correctly.
To realize the technology’s total value and potential, high levels of vehicle autonomy necessitate higher levels of cooperation and, as a result, higher levels of adoption density. For V2V safety applications and autonomous driving, density is essential. Some monitored automation apps have cooperative features that require low adoption density to deliver on their value proposition. Within heavily populated metropolitan areas, convergence-based applications may be applied and adopted. This strategy could eliminate the need for more significant infrastructure investments while also providing incentives for other cities and individuals to implement the technology (8).
From phones to cars: A dynamic shift
Apple is pushing ahead with self-driving car technology and aims to manufacture a passenger vehicle in 2024 that could have its battery technology. Since 2014, when it first began creating its truck from the ground up, the iPhone maker’s automotive efforts, known as Project Titan, have progressed unevenly. Apple reassessed its priorities and scaled back its attempt to concentrate on apps at one point. Doug Field, a former Apple employee who previously worked at Tesla, took over as project manager in 2018 and laid off 190 staff in 2019. Apple has advanced enough since then that it now wants to create a vehicle for customers, according to two people known with the project who asked not to be identified because Apple’s plans aren’t public (9).
The company’s goal of developing a mass-market personal vehicle contrasts with Alphabet’s Waymo, which has created Robotaxis to transport passengers for a driverless ride-hailing service. According to a third person who has seen Apple’s battery design, its plan revolves around a new battery design that could reduce battery costs while still increasing vehicle range. Even for Apple, a corporation with deep pockets that manufactures hundreds of millions of electronics items per year with parts imported from all over the world, building a car is a supply chain challenge. Elon Musk’s Tesla took 17 years to become a viable company.
It’s uncertain who would produce an Apple-branded car, but sources say the company will focus on a manufacturing partner. And it’s still conceivable that Apple will restrict its efforts to creating an autonomous driving system that can be built into a car made by a conventional automaker. According to two people familiar with Apple’s plans, pandemic-related delays could push the start of production into 2025 or later. According to two people familiar with Apple’s plans, the company has chosen to outsource parts of the device, such as lidar sensors, which help self-driving cars get a three-dimensional view of the road (10).
According to that guy, some sensors may be derived from Apple’s in-house built lidar units. Lidar sensors are used in Apple’s iPhone 12 Pro and iPad Pro versions, both of which were released this year. According to one of the people, Apple plans to use a unique mono cell design for the car’s battery, which bulks up the individual cells in the battery and frees up space within the battery pack. Because of this nature, more dynamic content can be packed into the battery, potentially increasing the car’s range. According to the source, Apple is also looking into battery chemistry called lithium iron phosphate, which is less likely to heat up and safer than other lithium-ion batteries.
Since at least 2014, the company has been working on its automotive technologies under the internal code name “Project Titan,” and it once wanted to create its vehicle from the ground up, producing a true “Apple Car.” It has now placed the car-building portion of the project on hold, possibly indefinitely, to concentrate on developing and perfecting the software and hardware needed to get a self-driving car on the road. Apple is also looking to collaborate with other automakers to build self-driving technology into consumers’ garages and driveways. Employees will travel between the company’s Silicon Valley offices in Palo Alto and Cupertino using an automated shuttle service (11).
The organization was based explicitly on creating its vehicle as early as August 2014 and only releasing its creations to the public until they could full automation, also known as “level-five” automation. The project is known as “Pail,” which stands for Palo Alto to Infinite Loop, the street address of the company’s main campus, and will use traditional vehicles with self-driving kits bolted on. Since Apple’s main campus is already being relocated to Apple Park, a substantial ring-shaped office down the road, the name emphasizes the project’s delays.
Intending to ship a vehicle eventually, the Cupertino, California-based technology giant, has a small team of hardware engineers designing drive systems, vehicle interior, and exterior car body designs. This is a more ambitious target than in previous years when the project’s main focus was on building a self-driving system’s base. Even so, some Apple engineers working on the project say that if the company sticks to its plans, it might release a product in five to seven years. According to the sources, the car isn’t even close to production, though they cautioned that timelines could change.