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Veteran Who Led Work on Home Devices and Apple’s Car Project Exits for Top Rivian Product Role

By Oluchukwu Ikemefuna

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Apple is experiencing a change in leadership, with DJ Novotney, who played a crucial role in creating HomePod devices and contributing to Apple’s secretive electric car project, leaving for a key position at Rivian, an electric truck manufacturer. 

This move is notable for both companies as Apple adapts to changes in the smartphone industry, and Rivian strives to establish itself as a top player in the electric truck market. Novotney’s departure prompts speculation about Apple’s plans for a car, while his joining Rivian suggests a strategic move in the electric vehicle sector.

In this post, we’ll be reviewing this strategic exit of Novotney and its impact to both Companies.

Who Is DJ Novotney?

DJ Novotney, a seasoned Apple hardware engineer with almost 25 years of experience, recently held the position of vice president of hardware engineering. During his time at Apple, he played a pivotal role in overseeing the development of significant products such as the HomePod and HomePod mini smart speakers.

Additionally, he contributed significantly to the early stages of Apple’s confidential electric car project, known internally as Project Titan.Novotney’s influence extends to iconic products like the iPod, iPhone, iPad, and Apple Watch, marking him as a key figure in the original iPod team’s history.

Tony Fadell‘s book, “Build,” recognizes his contributions, highlighting his role in Apple’s innovation journey. Novotney has a strong passion for leveraging cutting-edge technology to craft exceptional products that enhance people’s lives.

In a noteworthy move, Novotney transitioned from Apple to Rivian, a prominent player in the electric vehicle industry. Currently serving as Rivian’s Senior Vice President of Vehicle Programs, he is responsible for overseeing the development of upcoming electric vehicle models.

His wealth of expertise and experience is expected to play a crucial role in Rivian’s pursuit of dominating the electric truck market.

Novotney’s departure from Apple coincides with a critical juncture for both Apple and Rivian. Apple, amid growing competition in the smartphone market, is reportedly advancing its car ambitions, aiming to launch a self-driving vehicle in 2025.

On the other hand, Rivian, fueled by investor enthusiasm following its successful IPO in November 2021, is scaling up production of its R1T electric pickup truck and R1S electric SUV.

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What’s Novotney’s New Role At Rivian?

Novotney is taking on a new position at Rivian as the senior vice president of vehicle programs. He’ll report directly to CEO RJ Scaringe and will be in charge of guiding the development and introduction of Rivian’s upcoming vehicle models.

This role is crucial for Rivian as it strives to strengthen its position as a top player in the electric truck market.

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How Will Novotney’s Exit Affect Apple? 

Novotney’s departure is a significant loss for Apple, as he was considered a key figure in the company’s hardware engineering team. 

His experience in developing innovative and user-friendly products will be invaluable to Rivian as it continues to challenge established automakers in the electric vehicle space.

This news is likely to fuel speculation about the future of Apple’s car project. While the company has remained tight-lipped about its plans, Novotney’s exit could indicate a shift in focus or a potential slowdown in development.

Only time will tell how Apple’s car ambitions will unfold, but one thing is certain: the competition in the electric vehicle market is heating up, and Rivian is now a player to be reckoned with.

Read Also: Global Tech Layoffs: eBay Cuts 1,000 Jobs


Who is the founder of Rivian Automotive?

RJ Scaringe is the Founder of Rivian Automotive

Is Rivian a US Company?

Yes, Rivian is an American Electric Vehicle Company

How long has DJ Novotney been with Apple?

DJ Novotney has worked at Apple for over 25 years.

What was DJ Novotney’s role at Apple?

DJ Novotney was the president of hardware engineering


The departure of DJ Novotney, who played a pivotal role in advancing home devices and contributed significantly to Apple’s ambitious car project, marks a notable shift in the tech landscape. The legacy left behind at Apple is sure to be remembered, and the upcoming contributions to Rivian are poised to add a new dimension to the ever-evolving world of cutting-edge products.


  • bloomberg.com – Apple Home Devices, Car Veteran Exits for Top Rivian Product Role


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Blessing Ukibe
Blessing Ukibe

Medical Student at Nnamdi Azikiwe University|Tech content expert at Silicon Africa Technology|Lover of fun books and fun fun ☺️

Articles: 90

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