Apple is now turning its development team towards personal robotics

apple inc logo
Credit: Unsplash

apple inc logo
Credit: Unsplash


  • Apple has tasked its hardware engineering and AI divisions to developing a personal robot.
  • Robot has the capability to follow its owner around and interface using a tabletop display device.
  • The project is still in its earliest stages.

Apple is turning its development muscle to creating “home robots” after the tech giant abandoned its secretive electric vehicle (EV) project in February.

Apple Inc. is no longer interested in creating its electric car and shut down the relevant project, the Special Projects Group, in February of this year. The project was around as early as 2014 when reports surfaced claiming Apple had brought automotive engineers into its workforce.

However, based on a recent Bloomberg report, the company behind the highly successful iPad tablet and iPhone smartphone is already embarking on a new next-gen project: home robots.

According to the report, Apple has assigned two groups to oversee this new development effort. These are the hardware engineering division together with the artificial intelligence and machine learning group unit.

The research team privy to its details told Bloomberg that the device is a robot that trails people around their homes, and includes a tabletop display that employs robotics to adjust the display.

Aside from these early descriptions, there are no other details available on this R&D effort since the robotics project is still in the starting phases of development, Bloomberg said.

This project, together with the now-defunct EV development project, are apparently connected to Apple's effort to expand to new markets outside of mobile devices.

Dabbling in consumer robotics puts Apple into direct competition with other companies, like Amazon, which already has its Astro personal robot made available in limited numbers. The robot acts as a personal assistant that follows its owners around the house, and responds to commands via Alexa.

A version of Astro that performs the functions of a mobile security guard instead of a personal assistant is also available for businesses.

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