In just a week's time, the news cycle around Apple has transitioned from the impending launch of the Apple Watch to reports that the company is actively working to develop an electric car.
More than just an anonymously sourced rumor, a number of reputable publications have all reported that Apple is looking to get into the car industry. The Wall Street Journal, for example, reported a few days ago that Tim Cook has already authorized the development of a 1,000 strong team to get things rolling.
Stoking the Apple car rumors considerably is a recent report from Bloomberg which relays that Apple has designs to begin vehicle production as early as 2020. Now given that the car manufacturing process for a veteran automaker-- from design to production -- can often take upwards of 7 years, a five year time frame for a newbie like Apple seems curiously short.
Apple Inc., which has been working secretly on a car, is pushing its team to begin production of an electric vehicle as early as 2020, people with knowledge of the matter said. The timeframe -- automakers typically spend five to seven years developing a car -- underscores the project’s aggressive goals and could set the stage for a battle for customers with Tesla Motors Inc. and General Motors Co., both of which are targeting a 2017 release of an electric vehicle that can go more than 200 miles on a single charge and cost less than $40,000.
At this point, it's hard to deny that Apple is legitimately exploring the notion of releasing a car. Indeed, it has already hired a number of employees with traditional automotive design experience and expertise.
While it's one thing to keep a product like an Apple Watch under wraps, it's a lot harder to do when we're talking about cars; hundreds of employees need to be hired, factories must be set up and put into motion etc.
Over the coming months, if not weeks, it'll be interesting to see which direction these Apple Car rumors head to.