According to Reuters, Apple is planning to build its first car by the year 2024
Apple seems to be seriously looking at making a vehicle once again. Reuters notes that by 2024, Apple is pursuing the manufacture of a commercial car as well as the development of self-driving technologies and a “breakthrough battery technology.” The report is unclear about how it all comes together. It is not obvious that all of this technology is going into the first passenger vehicle that Apple aims to produce, but it indicates that Apple is exploring the manufacturing of cars after previously.
There were reports that Apple was designing a car back in 2015. But the concept was dramatically slowed down in 2016, with the production of a complete car being abandoned and Apple’s staff refocusing, according to the news at the time, on providing applications that could be sold to car manufacturers. Only last year, about 200 individuals were laid off from Apple’s car department.
Today, while there is a lot of doubt about when it will happen, Apple seems to have renewed its emphasis on creating a real car. Reuters says 2024 is the development target for an Apple-made passenger car, but due to pandemic-related delays, it may be moved back “to 2025 or beyond.” The study warns that there is still also a risk that Apple might scale its efforts down to only autonomous driving technologies.
The study says that Apple depends on third parties, including its LIDAR devices, to supply certain components of its self-driving technology. Apple’s battery technology is allegedly based on a “mono cell” configuration that makes it easier to cram more power into the total battery unit by not splitting it into different cells. Reuters notes that “a potentially longer range” and lower costs could allow for it.
Apple has refused to comment.
If Apple wants to develop a self-driving vehicle, it will also face regulatory barriers before it can reach the track. There are no actual self-driving vehicles available today, but in some cases, certain cars, including those from Tesla, offer a degree of automated driver assistance driving.
Apple turned oversight of its self-driving car project over to John Giannandrea, the director of AI for the venture, earlier this month. Since previously working at Google as head of the search and artificial intelligence, Giannandrea was brought on board in 2018 to work on Siri.
Another article from the Economic Daily News in Taiwan said only yesterday that an Apple-made car could be launched as early as 2021 in what, if real, would be a stunningly optimistic timeline. According to MacRumors, back in 2018, reputable Apple analyst Ming-Chi Kuo expected the arrival of a car between 2023 and 2025. In general, however, the feeling was that for the past few years, Apple has concentrated on self-driving technologies rather than manufacturing a real Apple-branded car.