Apple, Inc's. AAPL self-driving car chatter returned in recent weeks amid reports the tech giant is actively scouting for partners and suppliers in Asia.
The Apple Car project, dubbed Project Titan, is in for a setback due to a key executive departure.
What Happened: Doug Field, who was serving as VP of special projects at Apple, is being hired by Ford Motor Company F, the Dearborn, Michigan-based automaker said in a statement Tuesday.
Ford appointed Field as its chief advanced technology and embedded systems officer effective Tuesday.
Field, originally an Apple executive, was hired by EV giant Tesla, Inc. TSLA in late 2013 as VP of the vehicles program. At Tesla, he was in charge of the production of Model 3 vehicles before Elon Musk eventually took over the responsibility.
After a five-year stint at Tesla, Feld rejoined Apple in late 2018 to work on Cupertino's Project Titan car project.
Incidentally, Field started his career with Ford as a development engineer in 1987 and remained with the company until 1993.
Why It's Important: Field's appointment provides a boost to Ford's EV vehicle program
Field's job responsibilities include enacting a Blue Oval Intelligence tech stack; delivering customer-facing technologies, including infotainment, navigation and driver-assist technology; connected services and vehicle cybersecurity; and leading Ford Power-Up over-the-air updates to improve quality and reduce costs.
For Apple, the development is a definite negative. The company has seen several executive departures from its self-driving car unit in recent times. The delay in the the project could be one of the reasons for the exodus.
AAPL, F Price Action: Apple shares gained 1.55% Tuesday, closing at $156.69. Ford shares were up 0.54% at $12.95.
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