Apple buys self-driving car startup Drive.ai

Apple Inc on Tuesday confirmed that it has acquired self-driving shuttle firm Drive.ai.

Technology news website The Information reported earlier this month that the iPhone maker was considering acquiring the firm as a move to bring aboard some of its engineering talent to boost Apple’s own self-driving efforts.

One of hundreds of startups pursuing autonomous vehicles, Drive.ai had been running a small fleet of test shuttles in Texas, The Information reported. But the startup told California regulators that it plans to lay off 90 people in a permanent closure. The San Francisco Chronicle earlier reported the closure.

In Silicon Valley, it is common for larger companies to acquire struggling startups primarily to hire their engineers, a move known in the industry as an “acqui-hire.”

Apple is vying against rivals such as Alphabet Inc’s Waymo to develop…

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