Apple has decided to end development of its autonomous electric vehicle - Cafeqa

Apple has decided to end development of its autonomous electric vehicle


Project Titan, Apple’s foray into driverless vehicles, has come to a close after ten years. Insiders instead pointed to areas where Apple could redouble its efforts, causing the stock market to breathe a sigh of relief.

Conventional automakers in the US, Europe, and Asia are in a bind, and they’ve created a lot of issues for themselves. The literal sword of Damocles hanging over manufacturers is the nagging fear that digital companies may drive traditional enterprises out of the personal mobility sector. This danger became a reality with the announcement of Waymo and Project Titan, two self-driving vehicle initiatives, by Apple and Alphabet, the parent company of Google.

Car companies of yesteryear were concerned that their role would be reduced to that of a delivery service for hardware in the form of motorized “smartphones on wheels.” This week, however, Apple announced that it was scrapping its Titan electric car project, so maybe those worries are over.


According to the Wall Street Journal, a business newspaper published in New York, some of the 2,000 employees who were previously focused on vehicle development will instead be focusing on artificial intelligence (AI). Several hundred hardware engineers might be impacted by such move, according to Bloomberg, a US media company.

Artificial intelligence (AI) shows a lot more promise, especially when it comes to tools like ChatGPT that can generate fresh material from massive amounts of data. But this won’t stop layoffs from happening.


Apple has challenges in the e-car business

Since the car industry’s business model is so different from the tech industry’s, many insiders have been wary of Apple’s attempts to join it.

Their main issue was that consumers couldn’t just have electrical components for cars transported to their homes or uploaded to their PCs. The company’s operations instead relied on the frequent maintenance and international shipment of big, heavy components.

According to industry insiders, the lengthy development cycles for automotive goods may be attributed, in part, to the many rules in the sector. These laws cause the cycles to extend beyond weeks and months and into years.

Last but not least, automobile profit margins are far lower than Apple’s tech division. Car companies have warned that manufacturing and selling cars is not a picnic from the start.

There has been talk for a while now that Apple would sell off its R&D division to another major company, such as a carmaker or component supplier. Lots of people were debating whether or not British premium automobile manufacturer McLaren was involved.

In the midst of production issues plaguing Tesla’s Model 3 line, Elon Musk, creator of the US-based automobile and sustainable energy firm Tesla, stated that he previously tried to sell his vehicle manufacturing business to Apple. Musk said that Tim Cook, CEO of Apple, wasn’t even interested in speaking.

A waste of billions?

This week, The New York Times reported that Apple spent more than $10 billion (€9.3 billion) on Project Titan. According to Bloomberg, the annual breakdown of the automotive development expenditures was $1 billion.

Some industry watchers, including those at the US consultancy business Guidehouse, put Apple’s R&D spending at $15–$20 billion. The funds will now be available for use in other endeavors, such as those involving the automotive industry.

The Wall Street analyst Erik Woodring said in his article on Apple’s withdrawal from the driverless car race that “Apple is exhibiting some welcome cost discipline on longer-tailed future projects.” He hinted that artificial intelligence may be one of such projects.

He continued by saying, “Apple’s EV/AV efforts were too far behind well-funded competitors to represent a viable path towards commercialization and product differentiation.” He was referring to Apple’s work on EVs and AVs.

No increase in share price occurred as a result of the cancellation, but the statement still caused a significant amount of relief in the stock market. However, investors were relieved to see Apple abandon its costly automobile project, as the company’s stock price rose somewhat after the announcement.

Putting an end to Project Titan was “a good decision.”

It was only natural for Apple to shelve Project Titan, according to most investors. According to the German business publication Handelsblatt, Jonathan Curtis—the chief investment officer of the US-based Franklin Equity Group—thought it was a good move for Apple to enter the car market.

He continued by saying that his trust had placed billions of dollars into Apple, referencing the old saying that vehicles are really “computers on wheels” these days. According to Curtis, Apple’s choice to shelve Project Titan was “a good decision.” He expressed this opinion to the German newspaper.

Apple, according to Curtis, must now prioritize the reliable operation of its phone AI. “What is one of the worst products that Apple’s released in the last 10 years?” he said, pointing to an atypical failure of Apple’s.

He said that Apple’s virtual speech assistant Siri was the solution. “If Apple can fix Siri,” said he, “they could launched a massive new iPhone cycle.” Based on what Curtis suggested, the tech giant could then provide new services that provided actual value in conjunction with Siri software.

Apple CEO Tim Cook revealed new artificial intelligence technologies during a virtual shareholder meeting last week. Such “break new ground” announcements have often been reserved for June’s Apple Worldwide Developers Conference.

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