You know those advanced A-series processors that Apple’s always talking about, the ones that power the majority of its mobile devices? Well, they were all designed by a man named Jim Keller, who’s one of the most-respected people in the world of microprocessors. With that in mind, I’m sure you can imagine why it’s such a big deal that Keller is now the Vice President of Autopilot Hardware Engineering at Tesla.
We’ve learned that Tesla this month quietly hired high-profile microprocessor engineer Jim Keller as Vice President of Autopilot Hardware Engineering. Tesla today confirmed the news and sent us the following statement: “Jim Keller is joining Tesla as Vice President of Autopilot Hardware Engineering. Jim will bring together the best internal and external hardware technologies to develop the safest, most advanced autopilot systems in the world.” Before his stint at AMD with former Apple colleague Mark Papermaster, Keller was a director in the platform architecture group at Apple focusing on mobile products. There, he architected several generations of mobile processors, including the chip families found in millions of Apple iPads, iPhones, iPods and Apple TVs. Prior to Apple, Keller was vice president of design for P.A. Semi, a fabless semiconductor design firm specializing in low-power mobile processors that was acquired by Apple in 2008.