Apple Isn't Building a Car, But That Doesn't Mean Automakers Are Safe

Apple self-driving Lexus 1 photo
Photo: YouTube screenshot
For a long time, it was believed that Apple's mysterious Titan project involved the company's entrance into the car market, and for what we know, that may very well have been the case.
More recently, though, it transpired that the iPhone maker had given up on its plans to build an electric vehicle and, as CEO Tim Cook confirmed these past days in an interview, it will focus instead on developing artificial intelligence, particularly for autonomous systems.

A car made by Apple, a brand with a huge following and extremely loyal customer base, would have certainly disrupted the market. Out of all the car manufacturers, it would probably have been Tesla who felt it the most give its position as EV leader, but others would have had a new, powerful competitor to deal with as well.

But just because Apple isn't interested in making an actual car, that doesn't mean everybody in the automotive industry is in the clear. The Cupertino-based company made it abundantly clear that it will focus a lot of its resources on the development of autonomous systems, which means Apple is still in direct competition with almost all major carmaker out there.

For now, the rivalry will mostly be seen on the workforce front, where lots of companies will fight over the brightest talents, especially down in Silicon Valley where a lot of them are concentrated. That means good news for everyone with a valid input in the development of this technology as high competition will turn into ever-increasing wages. And if Apple isn't short on something at the moment, that has to be cash.

Market analyst Adam Jonas - of Morgan Stanley - believes this is just the beginning for Apple. “We believe Apple will eventually move beyond just software into designing a full car and/or launching a platform for third party services and content over time," he said, quoted by Automotive News. "This is because Apple argues it is most successful when it vertically integrates in a market, controlling the hardware and software and creating a platform.”

Technology companies and car manufacturers are competing directly for the first time, and the financial might of the former might prove to be decisive in the end. Dieter Zetsche, the CEO of Daimler AG did fear Mercedes-Benz (and other brands as well) might become a mere hardware supplier for these companies if drastic measures weren't taken, hence the feverish activity in Stuttgart and pretty much at every other car manufacturer you can think of.
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About the author: Vlad Mitrache
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"Boy meets car, boy loves car, boy gets journalism degree and starts job writing and editing at a car magazine" - 5/5. (Vlad Mitrache if he was a movie)
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