We must remember that Apple has many R&D projects and “says no a thousand times for every yes” and of course even if the car project does happen, any type of product is many years off (barring any acquisition). Then there is the current mess that is CarPlay…
But the idea does make some sense on a macro level. Tim Cook’s Apple is a Green company and takes on the world’s problems including Global Warming. Electric cars, when coupled with clean energy, cut Co2 emissions.
“We know at Apple that climate change is real… our view is the time for talk is past and the time for action is now” – Tim Cook on the recent opening of Apple’s monster solar project
Execs including Eddie Cue (Ferrari’s Board), Phil Schiller (who testified in the Samsung trial that Apple considered making a car before the iPhone) and Jony “Aston/Bentley” Ive (pictured above, shotgun) are known for their interest in cars.
Perhaps the most compelling argument is that Apple, which sits on $200B cash mountain and looks for areas ripe for disruption, can make a very short list of industries bigger than the consumer electronics industry that it now dominates.
For the record, I’d heard from people outside of Apple that they were hiring people that could only be working on electric cars. Without solid proof and with the knowledge that they’d hired auto folks like Doug Field to actually work on Macintosh hardware development in the past, we had nothing to go on.
As an electric car enthusiast who drives two different electric cars and writes about the clean energy/electric car industry, I couldn’t be happier about the prospect of Apple joining the electric car industry. I am a big Tesla fan but I think an Apple car would be great for the whole electric vehicle ecosystem. Even the rumor of Apple’s electric vehicle entry has cast a bright light on the technology.
Every major carmaker has some sort of electric car initiative and the prospect of Apple taking over their industry will only spur investment in the field. Nissan’s Leaf which debuted with ads on iAd, now is the only mainstream fully electric car, but many more are just around the corner.
Apple has the resources to expand vehicle charging infrastructure, battery technology and even influence government regulations.
Electric and autonomous transportation is clearly the future and Apple’s entry would be good for everyone outside of the legacy car and oil industry.
Other Silicon Valley giants are looking at autos. Google Inc. has been working on a self-driving car for years. The head of Google’s autonomous vehicle project said last year that the company aims to forge a partnership with auto makers to build a self-driving car within the next few years. A self-driving car is not part of Apple’s current plan, one of the people familiar with the project said.
“It’s a software game. It’s all about autonomous driving,” the source said.
That makes a lot of sense. In 5 years, many cars will have some level of autonomy built in. In 10 years, most cars will be autonomous. Every major automobile manufacturer and most big tech companies see the huge potential here and are actively investing in R&D.
Cars will change more in the next 10 years than they have in the last 100.
Almost every car on the street right now will be valueless.
Google and Tesla are the most obvious leaders in this field. Google’s Autonomous car project is well on its way. With public demonstrations already happening and Google lobbying governments for legislation to allow for autonomous driving, the groundwork is already being laid out.
Doug Field, a former Apple executive, demonstrated Tesla’s autonomous driving to me a few months ago (along with an insane 0-60mph time). Tesla expects to have at least partial autonomy in its cars within a year and its cars coming off the assembly line already have the hardware on board to do a lot of this.
Reuters also notes that Apple is talking to automotive manufacturing suppliers which would indicate that they’ve moved beyond the theoretical and are now on to the physical aspects of building a car.
Technology giant Apple AAPL.O is learning how to make a self-driving electric car and is talking to experts at carmakers and automotive suppliers, an automotive source familiar with the talks said on Saturday.
The Cupertino, California-based maker of phones, computers and watches is exploring how to make an entire vehicle, not just designing automotive software or individual components, the source said.
“They don’t appear to want a lot of help from carmakers,” the source, who declined to be named, said.
Apple is gathering advice on parts and production methods, the source said, adding that Apple appeared not to be interested in combustion engine technology or conventional manufacturing methods.
For the record, I’ve also heard rumblings of an early vehicle program at Apple which could be an R&D exercise or turn into something significant. One of the leaders of the program recently left Apple for Oculus if that’s any indication of what kind of technology Apple is hoping to bring to the automotive world.
Apple’s stock price closed up 2.3 points today to close at 122.02 giving the Cupertino company that was on the verge of bankruptcy less than 2 decades ago, the highest market cap of all time. The closing market cap of $705.32B reflects significant growth since it hit a recent low of a split-adjusted 56 in mid-2013.
From the upcoming book Believer, US President Barack Obama’s Chief campaign advisor David Axelrod gives a small tidbit on a meeting Obama had before he became president. He called it: In 2007, Obama got a sneak peek at the iPhone during a private meeting with Apple’s Steve Jobs. “If it were legal, I would buy a boatload of […]
The long-rumored news comes from The Verge: TUAW.com is closing as of Feb 2. I didn’t like all of what they did there, but there was a solid group of writers and people that I will miss reading.
AOL is shutting down The Unofficial Apple Weblog, better known as TUAW, sources familiar with the situation tell The Verge. The company — which is also shutting down its gaming site Joystiq — is in the midst of a major reorganization, and is cutting back on media properties it deems as underperforming.TUAW’s run comes to an end on February 2nd.
TechCrunch, which originally reported the news of AOL’s restructuring, noted that tech and lifestyle sites would most likely be affected by the changes. AOL decided against selling TUAW, leaving open the possibility it could resurrect the site in the future. But for now, a team of writers and editors are out of jobs.
While Verge earlier today reported that both tech were being closed, this is not quite accurate: Joystiq will stay on as a separate channel at Engadget, while TUAW content will be folded into the bigger site, we understand. It’s still being decided whether the two brand names will remain.
I’ve heard separately that pageviews were in a slow downward spiral over the past few years and the site became too small to justify being a separate unit against slowing ad revenue for AOL. In any case, it is always sad to see some good Apple writers out of a gig.
Scanadu cofounder Sam De Brouwer demonstrates the Scout and Scanaflo
At CES this week I met with a very interesting company called Scanadu which makes two interesting healthcare products that connect with the iPhone…
The Scanadu Scout (pictured, right) is a little electronic device designed by Yves Béhar that you touch to your forehead for a few seconds. Almost instantly, physiological parameters, including temperature, heart rate, blood oxygenation, respiratory rate, ECG, and diastolic/systolic blood pressure are sent to an app on your iPhone which logs these measurements and alerts users to anomalies and deviations which may be cause for heath concerns.
Perhaps more interesting however, Scnadu introduced its new “Scanaflo” device at CES 2015 which is a home urinalysis apparatus that uses your iPhone’s camera to image a set of colors strips.
The strips are all dipped in the patient’s urine and change color based on the levels of important chemicals found within. The various colors indicate the levels of glucose, protein, leukocytes, nitrites, blood, bilirubin, urobilinogen, microalbumin, creatinine, ketone, specific gravity, and pH in urine. Almost instantly after taking the picture, the app has a good idea of the chemical composition of the urine.
Again, the app logs your levels to compare it against a history and alerts to anomalies and potentially harmful deviations.
Interestingly, De Brouwer indicated that the Scanaflo could easily be upgraded to be a drug/urine testing apparatus which would open up a huge can of worms but also enable parents of troubled teens to know that their children were behaving. Obviously there would be privacy concerns.
Scanadu is also trying to push the Scanaflo through the FDA and hopes to have it in customer hands later this year.
At CES today, Logitech subsidiary Ultimate Ears (UE) announced its Megaboom Bluetooth speaker. Yes, it is a bigger, louder version of the popular UE Booms. That means it comes with apps that do things like equalize, set alarms and pair to stereo, with new features added all the time. The Megaboom also shares the 100-foot Bluetooth range and ability to pair with up to 8 devices with its smaller sibling.
But the bigger and louder sound of the Megaboom also comes with some nice extras not found in the other models. Megabooms are waterproof like crazy (IPX7). Bring it into the shower. Knock it in the pool (the shallow end, anyway). NBD. The MegaBoom also has a whopping 20-hour battery life but still charges via MicroUSB. Smart.
The cost: $299 is a significant $100 premium over the Booms and $200 premium over the Mini Booms and you’ll lose some portability with the bigger size. These are big and heavy and they don’t fit in a cupholder.
But if you want the banging-est sound you can find from a portable Bluetooth speaker, your search is over. I’ve secretly been reviewing a unit since last year and it is all true. The sound fills up a room, day at the beach, picnic, bikeride or destroys a car. It even works as a nice desk speaker. As I hinted in my Best Bluetooth Speaker o the year list, the Megaboom is as good, if not better than the other best $300 Bluetooth speakers we’ve reviewed: Bose Soundlink 3, Beats Pill XL and Jawbone’s Big Jambox have met their match!
Pair up to 8 Bluetooth® enabled source devices – Connect up to two source devices at the same time.
Wirelessly play (stream) to 2 UE MEGABOOMs from one source.
Mobile range of play is up to 30m (100 ft).
NFC (passive) enabled – (works with active NFC enabled source devices * Android Jellybean and higher).
Maximum Sound Level: 90dBA
Frequency Range: 65Hz – 20kHz
Drivers: Two 2″ drivers and two 2” x 4” Passive Radiators
Rechargeable Lithium-Ion Battery for up to 20 hours of battery life between Micro USB charges.
Actual battery life will vary with use, settings and environmental conditions.
Every piece in this gallery was created on an Apple product. Every brushstroke, every pixel, and every frame of film was brought to life by talented Apple users from around the world. As you explore their work, we hope it inspires you to create something new.