Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL)’s plans for its electric car project are not clear. Previous reports suggested that the tech giant hired around 1,000 workers from auto companies for its secret car program called Project Titan. But, last year, Bloomberg reported the departure of hundreds of employees including automotive engineers who were working on the iPhone maker’s car project. Many experts who observe the world’s most valuable company believe that it has stopped developing a car and might be looking at “a transportation platform,” according to a report from Business Insider.
Project Titan, Apple’s secret electric car project, was rumored to be approved by Tim Cook in late 2014. Reports suggested that Cook selected Steve Zadesky, a former Ford engineer, to lead the project. However, Zadesky left the tech giant last year for personal reasons.
Steve Jobs was interested in building an Apple car, according to Apple board member Mickey Drexler. Tony Fadell, former executive of the iPhone maker, also confirmed that Jobs had plans to design a car.
According to multiple reports, Apple hired 1,000 people including automotive engineers to design an electric car. But the tech giant remains silent about its car project.
We also saw reports that the iPhone maker offered lucrative incentives to Tesla employees to become part of its car project. The Sydney Morning Herald reported that the company could start production on its car as soon as 2020.
Apple Building Software for Autonomous Vehicles
Last year, Bloomberg reported that Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) hired Dan Dodge, the founder and former CEO of QNX, BlackBerry’s automotive software division. Dodge’s hiring suggested that the tech giant was looking to build software for autonomous vehicles. The publication, however, said that Apple will continue to build its own car.
According to a previous report from Business Insider, Apple has an office in Berlin where is working on a transportation project as well as mapping projects.
UBS analyst Steven Milunovich believes that “Project Titan” could be “a transportation platform — not a car but the entire experience,” Business Insider reported in its latest report.
“If the cars of the future are driverless, what will we do inside them as they ferry us around? We will need entertainment, communications, and work productivity apps to keep us occupied. Apple already does those on its other devices. The car will need navigation information, Wi-Fi, broadband connectivity, and probably its own operating system. Apple already does those, too,” reads Business Insider report.
By looking at different reports, we expect that Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) is building software for self-driving vehicles. Project Titan is not dead but it appears that the tech giant has shifted its focus from an electric car to a transportation platform.
Meanwhile, shares of the iPhone maker were trading up 1.40% on Friday after a positive report from Goldman Sachs regarding the iPhone 8. AAPL are up over 34% so far this year.