If you were excited to add a car to your collection of Apple products, you could be in for a disappointment.
We’ve known for a while that Apple has been downsizing the staff working on its self-driving car — referred to as Project Titan — and now we might know why.
Apple is reportedly canceling its plans to produce an autonomous car within the next decade, and re-focusing Project Titan on developing driverless software, which it can license to automakers, according to unnamed Bloomberg sources.
The main reason for Project Titan’s change of direction was the reported lack of cohesion among management. After former Ford executive Steve Zadesky stepped down as the head of the project earlier this year, his successor Bob Mansfield decided Apple would have more success if it focused on software, rather than hardware.
Since Mansfield announced the change to employees, more than 120 software engineers and “several hundred” engineers working on the car’s underpinnings have either been laid off, reassigned or left voluntarily.
Experts suggest another reason Apple is pulling the plug on the original plan for Project Titan has to do with the company’s bottom line. Tech companies traditionally operate on wide profit margins, whereas car manufacturers have an average net margin of around 10 percent, according to Bloomberg.
“For a quality Apple-branded car, they could probably get a healthy margin,” Eric Paul Dennis, an analyst at the Center for Automotive Research, told Bloomberg. “They probably weren’t willing to compromise on quality issues.”
Apple originally set a deadline for Project Titan of 2017, at which point it would determine the commercial viability of the project. It’s not clear whether that timeline will be affected by the change in direction.
Thumbnail photo via Apple
Apple was planning on exploiting Afghan lithium mines and corrupt lithium mining deals along with other Silicon Valley Obama financiers. Apple thought that Obama/Clinton were going to handout DOE and DOT taxpayer cash to Apple under White House orders..now, not so much!