Apple CEO Tim Cook hinted at some hints in an interview on the highly anticipated direction of Apple’s car development released on Monday, including that self-driving car technology will likely become a key feature.
“In my opinion, autonomy itself is a core technology,” Cook told Kara Swisher in an interview on the “Sway” podcast. “If you take a step back, then cars are robots in many ways. Self-driving cars are robots. Therefore, autonomy can do a lot. We will look at Apple̵
Cook was very cautious not to disclose too much, and refused to directly answer Swisher’s question on whether Apple plans to produce the car itself or the technology in the car. He did leave some clues, which showed that Project Titan was studying the middle things.
“We like to integrate hardware, software, and services, and find their intersection, because we think this is the magic,” Cook said. “And we like to have the main technology around.”
Swisher responded: “If you don’t mind, I plan to drive. I just want to drive.”
So are we.
Many people in the microcar industry like to say that electric scooters are basically iPhones with wheels, but Apple cars are more likely Actually Become an iPhone with wheels. Apple is generally known for owning all of its hardware and software, so it’s not surprising to see Apple engineers working closely with manufacturers to produce Apple cars. One day it is possible to cut the middleman and become a manufacturer.
Before the mass layoffs of Volkswagen in 2019, the so-called “Project Titan” seemed to be at risk of failure. However, recent reports indicate that the plan is still alive and plans to produce self-driving electric passenger cars by 2024.
Earlier this year, CNBC reported that Apple was about to finalize a deal with Hyundai-Kia to produce Apple-branded self-driving cars at the Kia Motors Assembly Plant in West Point, Georgia. A source familiar with Apple’s interest in Hyundai said that Apple hopes to work with an automaker to let Apple master the software and hardware used in cars.
Multiple reports stated that the two companies never reached an agreement, and negotiations broke down in February. But this has not stopped the spread of rumors and reports about Apple and its plans, which have previously been linked to other suppliers, automakers such as Nissan, and even start-ups.
It is not clear what the Apple car looks like, but as a passenger car, rather than a self-driving car or delivery car, it will be on par with cars such as Tesla.
“Although I admire and respect the company he built, I never talked to Elon,” Cook said. “I think that Tesla has not only done an incredible job in establishing a lead, but it has maintained its lead in electric vehicles for such a long time. Therefore, I am very grateful to them.”
The Titan Project is led by Doug Field, who was the senior vice president of Tesla’s engineering department and one of the key figures behind the launch of the Model 3.