In December, it was reported Apple Inc AAPL was working to design an all-electric, self-driving car. At the time, the car was rumored to aim for a release in 2024 and take on Tesla Inc TSLA in the race for a fully autonomous vehicle.
A new report from Bloomberg states Apple will take five to seven years to launch an autonomous car as the company is still in the early stages of development, with a rather small team. The team of Apple engineers are developing drive systems and vehicle interior and exterior with the goal of eventually shipping a self-driving vehicle. Apple has also added more ex-Tesla employees to the team.
It seems Apple may be taking a similar approach to Tesla. While previous rumors stated Apple was mostly working on the self-driving systems, the company now seems to be taking everything in house, designing an entire vehicle around the self-driving concept.
Tesla has taken a similar approach, designing its own vehicles, batteries, autonomous software, and even designing its own computer chips, a move Apple itself recently made, after Tesla.
A key differentiator is that Apple doesn't manufacture its own products. Apple will most likely need to rely on manufacturing from outside companies, which could cut into profit margins. Tesla's profit margins are rumored to be above 20% per vehicle, according to recent studies.
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