Apple has been quietly poaching engineers from automotive mapping company Here

Nokia Here Germany Apple Maps satellite view Mac screenshot 001

Over the past few months, Apple has been quietly hiring engineers away from Here, a Berlin-based automotive mapping company, for mapping jobs in Berlin. Interestingly, Apple’s never publicly confirmed that it has an office in Berlin.

According to LinkedIn profiles discovered by Business Insider, Apple’s poached at least half a dozen employees from Here, jointly owned by German car makers Audi, BMW and Daimler.

“In the past several months, Apple has hired several people away from Here for mapping jobs in Berlin,” a local source told Business Insider.

Some of the hires include Khang Tran, a senior software engineer at Here who joined Apple as a software engineer this month; Gilbert Schulz, a program manager at Here who joined the Cupertino firm in April; Konstantin Sinitsyn, a senior software engineer at Here who joined Apple last November as a software engineer; Manfred Reich, regional map and content lead for the Eastern Europe region at Here who joined Apple in July 2015; Andrey Arsentyev, a product manager at Here Maps who joined Apple in May 2015; and Torsten Krenz, a director at Here who joined Apple in August 2014.

These engineers now work on the Apple Maps team, as per their LinkedIn profiles.

German newspaper Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung said in April that Apple was working on a secret vehicle research and development lab in Germany. However, recent reports have asserted that the iPhone maker may have abandoned plans to build an electric vehicle of its own and is now thought to be focused on autonomous driving software.

Earlier in the month, Bloomberg reported that the Cupertino giant would use high-tech drones to help improve the accuracy and reliability of Apple Maps.

Offices of the Here startup in Germany, via Apple Maps.

Source: Business Insider