Apple declined Hyperdrive’s request for comment on hiring Ujkashevic and Ford said she had retired from the company.
“Enlisting Ujkashevic suggests that Apple is continuing to push toward a self-driving car despite several high-profile departures over the past year. The project’s management team has been almost entirely replaced since it was run by Doug Field, an executive who left for Ford last year,” the article states. “Building an electric, self-driving car is seen as a ‘next big thing’ for Apple – a new product category that can keep its sales growth from stalling. But the project has suffered numerous strategy shifts and personnel changes since it kicked off around seven years ago.”
“To that end, the company is looking to develop stronger safeguards than what’s available from Tesla and Waymo,” Hyperdrive wrote. “That includes building in plenty of redundancy – layers of backup systems that kick in to avoid safety and driving-system failures – Bloomberg reported last year. Ujkashevic could be involved with that component. Apple had hired Jaime Waydo to serve as car safety leader in 2018, but the Waymo veteran departed last year.”
“Desi has a wealth of global automotive industry leadership experience, driving Product, Quality, and Operational Excellence with a focus to enhance the Automotive Customer Experience and enable advanced technologies to deliver current and future mobility demands,” the post states.
Featured image: Desi Ujkashevic (Photo provided by Ford)