Home / News / Apple announced: cancel the electric car project and will lay off employees!

Apple announced: cancel the electric car project and will lay off employees!

2024-02-29 11:22:28

At 3 am Beijing time on Wednesday, the world-renowned technology journalist Mark Gurman published a blockbuster: Apple has decided to cancel the electric car project that has been engaged for more than a decade, and will shift the team to generative artificial intelligence.

Gurman said Apple Chief Operating Officer Jeff Williams and vice president of the car program Kevin Lynch had announced the decision internally on Tuesday, which a source familiar with the matter said "came as a surprise to the program's nearly 2,000 employees."

The two executives told employees that the project would begin to wind down, and that many of the employees on the team responsible for the car would be transferred to the artificial intelligence division led by executive John Giannandrea, where those employees would focus on generative AI projects, an increasingly critical priority for the company. The Apple Car team also has hundreds of hardware engineers and car designers who could potentially apply for jobs on other Apple teams.

Apple declined to comment on the news. After the news, Apple shares, which had fallen nearly 0.9% during the afternoon session on Tuesday, continued to rebound and closed up more than 1%.

Apple announced in 2014 that it would invest billions of dollars in the development of electric cars with autonomous driving functions, and named the "Titan" project (Titan), and then invested heavily from Google, Mercedes, Tesla and other companies to recruit, and formed a core team with Silicon Valley + automotive industry genes. With up to 5,000 developers reportedly involved, Apple has said it wants to create a fully autonomous electric car with a limousine interior and voice navigation.

Later, because Apple repeatedly swayed in the direction and route of the car, there was no cooperation object and form landing, resulting in a large number of executives involved in the Titan program, and the project stalled several times.

In March 2022, Guo Mingd——, an analyst at Tianfeng International who predicted Apple's products, said that month, "The Apple Car team has been dissolved for a period. In order to produce Apple Car in 2025, the team will need to be reorganized in three to six months."

In December 2022, the media learned that Apple is pushing back the target time of launching an electric car by about a year to 2026, saying that Apple's Titan project has been in a state of limbo for months because executives are faced with the reality that: In the current technological environment, it is not feasible to build a fully autonomous car without a steering wheel and pedals. At the time, the publication said that Apple had lowered expectations for autonomous driving features, including a steering wheel and pedals in the car, and only supported the function of starting full autonomous driving on the highway. This is equivalent to lowering the function level of the automatic driving system from the original plan level 5 to Level4.

In September 2023, Guo Mingd—— again issued pessimistic remarks, saying that Apple's car project has "disappeared", if you want to "put into production in the next few years", the best solution is to enter the car market through the acquisition of car companies, if not, he doubted that Apple may not be able to mass produce in a few years

In January 2024, the media learned that Apple is developing a more basic driver assistance function, which is comparable to the current self-driving capability of Tesla cars, and will use the Level2 system, which is further downgraded from the previous Level4. Even so, Apple has pushed back its target date for releasing the car, with the latest target being 2028 at the earliest. That means the planned launch of the car has been delayed by another two years.