INTERNATIONAL

Apple reportedly pulls the plug on its billion-dollar car project to focus on generative AI

Apple has scrapped its long-rumoured electric car project, according to multiple sources, putting an end to a secretive and costly endeavour that has been in the works for over a decade.

Apple shifts gears from car to AI after scrapping Project Titan. REUTERS/Joshua Roberts/File Photo(REUTERS)

The company broke the news to its employees during an internal meeting on Tuesday, saying that it would lay off some workers and reassign others to focus on generative artificial intelligence, as reported by various outlets.

Hindustan Times – your fastest source for breaking news! Read now.

The electric car project, known as Project Titan, was estimated to have cost Apple billions of dollars in research and development, and its cancellation is a significant reversal of its previous strategy.

ALSO READ| OpenAI says New York Times ‘hacked’ ChatGPT to build copyright lawsuit

The Apple CEO, Tim Cook, had occasionally dropped hints about the company’s interest in a car in the past, but he never confirmed that it was working on one.

What is Project Titan?

The project had attracted a lot of attention and speculation from both the tech and the automotive sectors. Apple had recruited top talent from prestigious car makers such as Lamborghini and Tesla to lead its efforts, and had bought the self-driving startup Drive.ai in 2019.

According to Bloomberg, the announcement caught many of the employees involved in the project off guard, and some of them may lose their jobs.

The project had faced many challenges and changes since it began in 2014. The company had struggled to bring a product to the market, and had revised its plans several times.

In 2016, Apple laid off dozens of workers who were part of the project, and in 2021, the key executive who was overseeing the project left to join Ford.

Earlier this year, Bloomberg reported that Apple had pushed back its expected launch date for the car to at least 2028. According to the outlet, the company had also scaled back its vision for the car, from a fully autonomous vehicle to one with some self-driving features similar to Tesla’s cars. This starkly contrasted the company’s original idea of creating a completely driverless car with no steering wheel and a limousine-like interior.

ALSO READ| Suspect in New York hotel killing remains in custody without bond in Arizona stabbings

Elon Musk, reacted to Apple’s decision to abandon its electric car by tweeting emojis of a salute and a cigarette on X.

Apple will reportedly shift more of its resources to working on generative AI projects, and will move some of the engineers and researchers who were working on the car project to its special projects group.

During an earnings call earlier this month, Cook said that Apple was investing “a tremendous amount of time and effort” on artificial intelligence and would introduce generative AI features to its customers within the year.

Related Articles

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Back to top button