If you’re worried about the future of Tesla, then you have something to be scared of. Apple isn’t the largest company in the world by accident; they have big plans to get even bigger, and they know how to execute their goals when it comes to their products and services.
In this article we’ll show you why Apple has been looking at Tesla for inspiration, what kind of impact this could have on the electric car manufacturer, and how Tesla will fight back – because as it turns out, they aren’t going down without a fight.
What does it mean?
Last week, Apple’s Senior Vice President of Worldwide Marketing Phil Schiller announced that Apple was investing in a billion-dollar fund to invest in companies that are bringing new ideas to market. The fund will likely be focused on companies in areas like augmented reality (AR), artificial intelligence (AI), and autonomous vehicles. Apple is calling it Apple Capital, but so far hasn’t disclosed much information about what to expect from it or what it will look like. However, there have been rumours that Apple may unveil a car as soon as 2022, which could represent one of its earliest investments under Apple Capital if true. What does all of this mean for Tesla? In short: Expect Apple to become an even bigger threat than they already are.
The big question here, though, is: Will Apple’s venture into automotive tech give them an edge over their competitors? I’m inclined to say yes. Automotive technology and services are rapidly changing, but many companies are still focused on things like performance and design rather than software. Apple excels at software (think Siri vs Google Assistant), so it’s likely that their in-car experience will be very different from what people are used to today. Of course, Apple will also have a much larger budget than most other car manufacturers to throw at R&D and marketing as well. So while there’s plenty of time for other players to catch up with what they’re planning on doing now, I wouldn’t count out Apple just yet… unless you’d rather bet on Google instead?
In my opinion, Apple will be much harder to compete with than Google for two reasons. The first reason is that it’s unlikely that Google or any other company can challenge Apple in terms of both software and hardware expertise. Apple excels at making great software (think Siri vs Google Assistant), so their in-car experience will likely be quite different from what people are used to today. The second reason is that most car manufacturers are focusing on other things like performance and design, so a lot of them aren’t even equipped to handle a shift towards an all-software approach – while Apple, on the other hand, has plenty of resources available to experiment with all sorts of unique ideas.
Why would Tesla be good for Apple?
Apple has a lot of money. Apple wants to do something with that money. Electric cars are cool now, so maybe Apple will make an electric car. Then again, Apple’s latest electric car project was a bit of a disaster—so maybe it won’t? It’s hard to know what Apple plans to do next or when it’ll happen. But one thing’s for sure: we’re about to find out. When Steve Jobs started working on a new project, he was known for shrouding it in secrecy—to the point where people at his company didn’t even know what he was working on or why it mattered so much.
But sometimes Jobs’ secretiveness backfired. When he was working on an entirely new category of products for Apple—tablets, smartphones, music players—he kept that information under wraps. Rumours spread about a mysterious Apple-branded device called a Jesus phone or an iPod killer, even though those rumours turned out to be wrong. People in his company didn’t know what Jobs wanted to do with all that secrecy, why he needed it, or how he planned to do it—which made it hard for them to help him make something great.
That’s what makes Apple’s recent actions so interesting. Apple has hired a lot of engineers from electric car company Tesla, apparently to help it develop its own version of an electric car. But there’s nothing secretive about it: Bloomberg says that Apple actually posted a job listing for an auto device hardware engineer on LinkedIn (and then promptly took it down). Apple never even asked to see candidates’ resumes—the hiring manager just assumed that anyone who saw that job listing would jump at a chance to work with Jony Ive on developing one of Apple’s next big products. Why would Apple do something like that? It seems Jobsian in some ways: secrecy can hide problems or flaws in development. But why take such a bold step when you’re trying to create something entirely new?
Why would Apple be good for Tesla?
When Apple releases a new product, it doesn’t just compete against other similar products. It redefines them. In fact, an Apple device or service often makes everything else seem useless in comparison. So what does that mean for a rival like Tesla? Well, if Apple’s electric car can beat Tesla at their own game—and even try to improve on it—it could make Tesla’s current offering almost irrelevant in a matter of months. Whether that happens or not remains to be seen, but one thing is clear: Apple isn’t going to go down without a fight.
Even so, Apple’s entrance into a new market doesn’t always mean massive disruption. In some cases, it simply means another option for people to consider. After all, we already have several car brands that offer electric vehicles, such as Nissan and Volvo. And with electric vehicle sales on an upswing, it’s certainly possible that Apple would just be one more competitor in a highly-crowded field. Of course, even if that ends up being true in a few years or decades, Tesla will still have had to deal with immense pressure to innovate before then—pressure which could push them to develop their next product faster than they would have otherwise.
On top of that, Apple isn’t just entering a new market here. The company has made car-related acquisitions before. In fact, Apple’s interest in electric vehicles goes all the way back to 2013, when it bought a self-driving car startup called ‘Velodyne’ for $140 million. And that was only three years after Apple unveiled their first full-fledged iOS device: iPhone. Think about that for a moment: Three years from one product to another completely unrelated one—and a highly advanced one at that (self-driving cars certainly aren’t something most people are capable of developing). That kind of speed doesn’t seem like anything short of remarkable, especially when you compare it to almost any other tech giant out there.
We know Apple likes to make a splash when it enters new markets. The fact that Apple has filed an electric car patent in China could be an indication that they are serious about creating a new vehicle. The best news of all? After their battery nightmare, it looks like Apple has turned things around: It’s been granted a full electric car production license by Chinese officials. This means we could be seeing an Apple iCar sooner than later.
We’re glad Apple’s battery nightmare didn’t stop them in their tracks. This license means that we could be seeing an Apple iCar sooner than later. And we couldn’t be more excited. After all, a true rival to Tesla would be incredible. It would force other companies to push out more electric cars as well. And with more options, consumers are bound to benefit too—cheaper prices, better performance—the works!
Apple iCar – We aren’t expecting Apple’s car (if it does get made) to have autonomous features like many other upcoming cars have planned for their near future–but if it did? Even better! After all, Apple has been one of the very few companies that have been against Google’s idea of a driverless car. With that said, we wouldn’t be surprised if Apple was planning on having its own self-driving technology in place for when its vehicle hits production. After all, it would be another way to make sure that customers were loyal to its brand. And let’s face it: There’s no way anyone would buy an electric car from a company without some sort of self-driving tech in place. It just wouldn’t happen!
We can’t wait to see what Apple comes up with when it does decide to finally make its move. Until then, we know for sure that other companies will have no choice but to up their game as well. In fact, if an Apple iCar does come out, it wouldn’t be shocking if BMW followed suit by creating a completely electric car of its own. After all, BMW isn’t known for following in anyone’s footsteps—it goes ahead of everyone else instead. And because there are only a few mainstream brands who are making plans for their very own electric cars at present…it seems pretty likely that another major car company could come out with one at some point.
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