Apple Agrees with Feds on Automated-Vehicle Policy—using a Few Key modifications
Although Apple’s plans for the planet of self-driving cars remain opaque, the tech behemoth has taken a keen interest within the federal government’s brand new policy on autonomous vehicles.
In 5 pages of comments submitted to regulators, a top Apple executive outlined the company’s position on the brand new Federal Automated Vehicles Policy in addition to offered suggestions on how the item could be clarified to accelerate the process of putting test vehicles on U.S. roads.
The letter gave no hint on whether or when Apple is usually planning to introduce its own autonomous vehicles or provide self-driving technology to another company in which produces cars. however Steve Kenner, director of product integrity at Apple, nonetheless conveyed enthusiasm for a foray into autonomous vehicles.
“The company is usually investing heavily within the study of machine learning in addition to automation, in addition to is usually excited about the potential of automated systems in many areas, including transportation,” he wrote in comments submitted to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) on Nov. 22.
create alone.” – Steve Kenner, Apple
His comments generally supported the major planks of the Federal Automated Vehicles Policy, which federal leaders unveiled in late September, including plans for a 15-point safety assessment of autonomous cars in addition to the development of a network in which competing companies could share anonymized data on autonomous crashes in addition to near misses.
“By sharing data, the industry will build a more comprehensive dataset than any one company could create alone,” Kenner wrote. “This kind of will allow everyone within the industry to design systems to better detect in addition to respond to the broadest set of nominal in addition to edge-case scenarios.”
Kenner emphasizes these shared datasets should be stripped of any identifying data to ensure motorist in addition to vehicular privacy. He went further, proposing in which the auto industry should create privacy standards in which are more stringent than the ones adopted by the Auto Alliance, the main lobbying arm of major OEMs, in November 2014.
Apple’s top concern isn’t necessarily one in which arises within the policy, however the item’s one in which a revised policy could potentially fix. A provision within the Fixing America’s Surface Transportation (FAST) Act, enacted into law in December 2015, permits established manufacturers to test brand new technologies on public roads without the need to receive an exemption by federal motor vehicle safety standards. however in which doesn’t extend to newer entrants into transportation.
“To maximize the safety benefits of automated vehicles, encourage innovation, in addition to promote fair competition, established manufacturers in addition to brand new entrants should be treated equally,” Kenner wrote.
While NHTSA can’t override the FAST Act–in which could require an act of Congress–regulators could amend the policy to state in which exemptions are not required for testing of vehicles on public roads, as long as they are never used by the general public. NHTSA has already signaled its willingness to give prompt attention to the exemption process to help brand new innovations in which may not conform to the safety standards.
In a separate section of its comments on the policy, Apple said in which, while the item supports the 15-point safety assessment, the item’s concerned about a section in which asks companies to submit documents four months before testing on public roads takes place.
“As written, the safety assessment provision of the policy could be interpreted as requiring preapproval by NHTSA prior to testing,” Kenner wrote. “This kind of could result in a testing blackout period while NHTSA reviews the safety assessment.”
Overall, Apple offered NHTSA high compliments on the policy development, something the agency isn’t accustomed to receiving by the industry the item regulates. Apple praised portions in which included a discussion of ethical considerations in which should be incorporated into vehicle development, the encouragement of the data-sharing network, in addition to a push for type state policies in which could help avoid a patchwork approach in which subjects manufacturers to different laws in different states.
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In July, Apple undertook a high-profile shift within the direction of its autonomous-car project—if developments in a secret project can be described as high profile. The company, which has never publicly acknowledged in which the item’s working on a vehicle, tapped longtime executive Bob Mansfield to take over its self-driving-car program, dubbed Project Titan, according to many reports.
While Kenner’s letter to NHTSA didn’t delve into details of how Apple intends to deploy its machine learning in addition to automated technologies within the realm of transportation, the item does, if anything, confirm in which the project exists in addition to in which Apple remains hard at work.