If you are not aware then Tesla has a Chinese rival that goes by the name of Xpeng. The Chinese electric car maker was recently in news for equipping its cars with LiDar sensors — something that Tesla CEO Elon Musk believes are “expensive” and “unnecessary”. As is mostly the case with Musk, someone on Twitter said that Xpeng using LiDar was moving away from its ‘copying’ from Tesla’s strategy. To which, Musk replied, “They have an old version of our software & don’t have our NN inference computer”.
When a Twitter user wondered if the Chinese company had a copy of Tesla’s old source, Musk not only answered in the affirmative but went on step ahead. The Tesla CEO wrote on Twitter, “Yeah. They stole Apple’s code too,” referencing to an incident that took place in 2018.
@spacetouristuk @TashaARK Yeah. They stole Apple’s code too.https://t.co/gy4DT7Pq9N
— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) 1605885610000
An ex-Apple engineer was arrested in 2018 and charged with stealing proprietary information that was related to Apple’s long-rumoured self-driving car project. The engineer had started working for Apple in 2015 and was accused of downloading certain files related to engineering schematic and technical reports. He quit Apple before working for XMotors, the China-based electric car company.
As for the LiDar sensors in electric cars, Musk says that there’s a misconception he doesn’t like that tech. In a tweet, he said that, the sensors are used by SpaceX — his other company — but doesn’t find it useful in Tesla cars. He wrote in a tweet about LiDar, “Just pointless imo for self-driving. If you’re going to do active photon generation, use an occlusion penetrating wavelength, like precision radar at ~4mm.”