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Apple eyes 2024 for first passenger vehicle: report

Apple eyes 2024 for first passenger vehicle: report
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Apple is aiming to have its own self-driving car on the market by 2024 that could include a new battery design optimized for longer ranges, sources familiar with the plans told Reuters.

Two unnamed sources told the news service that Apple's so-called Project Titan aims to have a product ready for consumers within just a few years that would feature Apple's own design for a battery which one source said would "radically" reduce the cost of automobile batteries.

Central to the project is the development of a "monocell" battery meant to save space with a more efficient design, allowing the company to create a potentially longer-lasting device. One source also indicated that Apple was pursuing a material known as lithium iron phosphate in the hopes of developing batteries with lower risks of overheating.

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The company is also pursuing the development of other technology for the vehicles, the unnamed sources told Reuters, including lidar sensors similar to those used in the iPhone 12 Pro's camera.

“If there is one company on the planet that has the resources to do that, it’s probably Apple. But at the same time, it’s not a cellphone,” one person who worked on Project Titan told Reuters of the company's efforts to develop its own commercially available automobile.

Apple declined to comment to Reuters for the story. The company revealed its efforts to develop self-driving automobile technology to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) in 2016, telling the agency that it was "investing heavily in machine learning and autonomous systems.” 

“There are many potential applications for these technologies, including the future of transportation, so we want to work with NHTSA to help define the best practices for the industry," a company spokesperson said at the time.