New York – Apple’s co-founder Steve Jobs considered building a self-driving “Apple Car” back in 2008, as Tony Fadell, the iPod co-creator and current chief executive officer of Nest Labs, said in an interview with Bloomberg. They both used to talk about the idea but then Jobs decided to focus all the energy and resources on the iPhone.
“If you think about a car, what’s a car? It has batteries, a computer, it has a motor and it has mechanical structure. If you look at an iPhone, it has all the same things. It even has a motor in it, so if you try and scale it up and go ‘Oh my god. I can make a car with those components,” commented Fadell. Jobs and Fadell frequently asked hypothetical questions to each other about how an Apple car would look like, what kind of power source it would use and what the dashboard would be made of.
The list of the numerous projects Jobs said no to, includes televisions and cameras since they were already too busy. He did like to discuss them, but he knew the mobile phone market was their highest priority at that time.
“At the end of the day, what was the biggest one that had the biggest dramatic impact on the world?,” Fadell expressed. “We said, ‘OK, we’re going to focus our energy on that. Forget all this other stuff.'”
Even before the iPhone was released in 2007 the idea of an iCar was a matter of discussion at the company, as confessed by Phil Schiller, Apple’s senior vice president of marketing, in 2012 court testimony.
Rumors have circulated about Apple working on a self-driving car. The company might be since long ago pursuing testing grounds, as reported by The Guardian. They even have been recently recruiting automotive industry experts to help develop the denominated “Titan Project”, which is said to be on an advanced stage in the Town of Sunnyvale, Apple Insider informs. It remains unclear whether this campus holds Titan’s development or not, but AI does confirm that Apple has a strong presence in that area and that they have built an “auto work area” and a “repair garage”.
Fadell told Bloomberg he did not have first-hand information about the top-secret project. Instead, he commented that he did expect to see huge changes in the way people thought about electric cars in terms of price and accessibility.
Source: Apple Insider