car Stories May 16, 2016

tim-cook

As reported earlier, Apple CEO Tim Cook is visiting Beijing, China this week. The earlier Reuters report suggested Cook was intending to talk with government officials about company matters amidst increasing tensions between the country and Apple, following trademark disputes and the ban on iTunes Movies and iBooks content.

On Monday, though, Cook met with Chinese app developers at an Apple Store. The talk was hosted by Jean Lui, president of taxi company Didi Chuxing, of which Apple has invested $1 billion dollars. A plethora of Chinese app publishers were in attendance, including a Groupon-esque clone ‘Meituan’,  photo app MeituPic, news provider Toutia.com, cooking app DayDayCook and game developer Tap4Fun (via CNBC).

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car Stories May 12, 2016

homekit-security

A recent patent filed by Apple and discovered by PatentlyApple hints at ways in which Apple is planning to make its HomeKit platform smarter. The patent, published today by the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office, is for an “automated environment” in which HomeKit would be able to track the routines of users and implement automated behaviors based on those habits.

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car Stories March 1, 2016

Screen Shot 2016-03-01 at 6.49.15 PM

According to a report from Silicon Valley Business Journal, Apple has recently leased a 96,000-square-foot industrial property in Sunnyvale, California. The property was originally home to a Pepsi bottling plant, but Apple now occupies the entire space. It has widely been reported in the past that Apple is testing its Project Titan electric car initiative in Sunnyvale, with the company reportedly operating a shell company called Sixty Eight Research out of the city.

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car Stories January 20, 2016

Ford is expanding its SYNC® connectivity system, adding Apple CarPlay, giving iPhone users access to Maps, Messages, Phone and Music through Siri voice control or touch screen. In North America, Ford is making Apple CarPlay available on all 2017 vehicles equipped with SYNC 3, starting with the all-new Ford Escape. Owners of 2016 vehicles equipped with SYNC 3 will have an opportunity to upgrade later in the year.
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Ford is expanding its SYNC® connectivity system, adding Apple CarPlay, giving iPhone users access to Maps, Messages, Phone and Music through Siri voice control or touch screen. In North America, Ford is making Apple CarPlay available on all 2017 vehicles equipped with SYNC 3, starting with the all-new Ford Escape. Owners of 2016 vehicles equipped with SYNC 3 will have an opportunity to upgrade later in the year.

Rumors of Apple Car (codename ‘Project Titan’) continue to swirl and there’s plenty time left for Apple to solidify or change its plans, given the expected launch of the new automobile is still five years away. However, that isn’t stopping car company executives weighing in on the rumors. Whilst GM execs diss the idea of Apple investing in an electric car as a ‘gigantic money pit’, an executive from Ford seems enthused by the prospect. In an interview with Trusted Reviews,  Don Butler, Executive Director for Ford Connected Vehicles, said that they welcome competition and thinks technology companies can pull it off.

“We welcome others joining. We welcome the activity that’s in the space. We think it’s exciting. It’s actually changed that we are embracing,” said Butler, speaking to TrustedReviews at the CES 2016 tradeshow in Las Vegas. “So I think Apple can do it. I think Google can do it.”

Watch the full interview in the video after the break …

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car Stories January 11, 2016

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During an interview at Tesla’s design Studio in Los Angeles, Tesla CEO Elon Musk commented on Apple’s rumored electric vehicle program, codenamed “Project Titan“. It was hardly the first time the CEO commented on the project, but it always interesting to hear about the possibility of Apple bringing an electric car to market. This time Musk called the project under-development an “open secret” and agreed that Apple is “serious about it.” expand full story

car Stories October 28, 2015

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A patent troll is currently suing Apple, Samsung and half the automotive industry – as well as other companies – over the use of a vague, decade old patent that covers operating certain functions of a vehicle, like starting the engine and locking/unlocking doors, through a “watch” – now known as a “smartwatch”.

Intellectual Capital Consulting (LCC), the plaintiff in the lawsuit (which we embed below), claims that the defendants are using patented technology in smartwatch products and software that they are selling or contributing to sell. expand full story

car Stories August 21, 2015

carplay-3

Apple appears to have hired yet another former Tesla engineer to join its ever growing automated car team. First noticed by Reuters, Apple has hired Jamie Carlson to likely join its car team. Carlson’s LinkedIn profile reflects that he has left Tesla and joined Apple, although his role at Apple is simply listed as a a member of a special projects group.

While at Tesla, Carlson worked on its Autopilot self-driving program. Prior to his stint at Tesla, he worked on automotive vision systems for Gentex Corp. expand full story

car Stories July 24, 2015

BMW i3-Apple

Apple and BMW have engaged in negotiations over Apple’s interest in using BMW’s i3 electric cars as a basis for its own electric car project, according to a new report from German publication

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car Stories July 20, 2015

carplay

According to a report from The Wall Street Journal, Apple has hired a seasoned veteran from the automotive industry for its rumored car initiative. The report claims that Apple has hired Doug Betts, who previously led global quality control at Fiat Chrysler Automobiles. Betts worked at Fiat Chrysler until last year and started at Apple earlier this month.

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car Stories May 19, 2015

Automatic upgrades $100 Bluetooth car dongle, launches ‘app store for cars’

Automatic, a Bluetooth dongle that plugs into your car’s on-board diagnostic port to stream data to your iPhone, has been updated to a new version capable of streaming to two apps at the same time. The company has also launched an ‘app store for cars’ in the form of a webpage with download links to 22 apps that are compatible with the device.

We reviewed the original model back in 2013, when Zac Hall described it as smart, fun and interesting. At the time, it could only stream data to Automatic’s own companion app, but the latest version supports two simultaneous Bluetooth data streams, allowing both Automatic and a second app to receive data simultaneously.

Compatible apps include nine business-oriented apps, allowing things like automated mileage expense claims; convenience apps, like Nest, to pre-heat or cool your home while driving home; safety, like a driving coach to help new drivers; and performance, to provide real-time data to assist in car tuning.

The second-gen Automatic adapter also includes “built-in GPS, Made for iPhone (MFi) certification, and an improved connector to fit better in more cars” at the same $100 price.

car Stories February 14, 2015

Oatmeal-autonomos-carImage via the Oatmeal

One of the weird details in the WSJ report on the Apple electric car project yesterday was this bit:

Other Silicon Valley giants are looking at autos. Google Inc. has been working on a self-driving car for years. The head of Google’s autonomous vehicle project said last year that the company aims to forge a partnership with auto makers to build a self-driving car within the next few years. A self-driving car is not part of Apple’s current plan, one of the people familiar with the project said.

This morning’s Reuters report contradicts the earlier WSJ report saying that Apple’s electric car will be autonomous.

“It’s a software game. It’s all about autonomous driving,” the source said.

That makes a lot of sense. In 5 years, many cars will have some level of autonomy built in. In 10 years, most cars will be autonomous. Every major automobile manufacturer and most big tech companies see the huge potential here and are actively investing in R&D.

Google and Tesla are the most obvious leaders in this field. Google’s Autonomous car project is well on its way. With public demonstrations already happening and Google lobbying governments for legislation to allow for autonomous driving, the groundwork is already being laid out.

Doug Field, a former Apple executive, demonstrated Tesla’s autonomous driving to me a few months ago (along with an insane 0-60mph time). Tesla expects to have at least partial autonomy in its cars within a year and its cars coming off the assembly line already have the hardware on board to do a lot of this.

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car Stories July 9, 2013

apple-patent-auto-touchscreen

A new Apple patent published today by the United States Patent and Trademark office (via AppleInsider) could show some of Apple’s future plans for bringing iOS to the car through its partnership with various car manufacturers. Earlier this year at WWDC, Apple showed off its new iOS in the Car feature that will bring enhanced iOS integration for apps such as Maps and Siri to select vehicles sometime next year. Today, Apple describes how it could also be doing some work on the touch panels that will control these new in-car features.  expand full story

car Stories November 2, 2012

iPad mini installed into dashboard of car (Video)

The iPad mini has only officially been on sale since 8 a.m. this morning, but one 9to5 reader was already able install the device in the dashboard of a car. Soundwaves of Tampa custom-built a dash in a 2012 Toyota Corolla, allowing folks to easily slide the iPad mini in and out. Soundwaves has more images of the build on its Facebook page.

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