Apple reportedly wants to ‘acqui-hire’ self-driving car startup

Ryan Daws is a senior editor at TechForge Media, with a seasoned background spanning over a decade in tech journalism. His expertise lies in identifying the latest technological trends, dissecting complex topics, and weaving compelling narratives around the most cutting-edge developments. His articles and interviews with leading industry figures have gained him recognition as a key influencer by organisations such as Onalytica. Publications under his stewardship have since gained recognition from leading analyst houses like Forrester for their performance. Find him on X (@gadget_ry) or Mastodon (

Apple is reportedly mulling a purchase of self-driving car startup in an ‘acqui-hire’ deal to grab its talent. is full of skilled personnel after being founded in 2016 by a pioneering team of graduates from Stanford’s AI lab. With AI talent in short supply, it seems Apple is considering purchasing a whole company to get the skills on its side.

Apple would not get any of’s intellectual property as part of the deal, only the minds behind it. While it’s unclear what Apple is considering paying for the startup, the company was believed to be valued at ~$200 million during a VC round in 2017.

The fact Apple is scoping out talent from a driverless car firm shows Cupertino’s continued interest in the area.

Back in January, Apple pulled around 200 employees off its self-driving car project which made some people question whether Cupertino had the ability (and resolve) to break into such an established industry with a minefield of regulatory needs that vary from location-to-location.

A self-driving car being tested by Apple had a rear-end collision with another vehicle last year. Fortunately, unlike Uber’s self-driving car incident, there were no injuries.

During an interview with CNN last November, Apple CEO Tim Cook expressed that his company is focused on the software side of autonomous vehicles. Acquiring talent from is a surefire way of boosting Apple’s in-house expertise in applying machine learning to cars.

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