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Lay off more than 600 employees! After Apple gave up building a car

2024-05-27 Update From: AutoBeta NAV: AutoBeta > News >


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Today, according to media reports, Apple submitted a document to California this week that it will lay off more than 600 employees in California.

It is understood that most of the layoffs are related to automobile projects. At least 87 of them have worked in secure facilities that Apple has developed for next-generation screens, while the rest are mainly concentrated in buildings related to car projects. At present, the official has not yet responded to the news.

In fact, Apple's decision to fire people involved in the auto project is not surprising. At the end of February, Apple decided to shelve and cancel all development plans for self-driving electric cars and shift its focus to generative artificial intelligence. This decision means that all work on Apple's car-building project will stop, and the team members involved in the car project will naturally face the outcome of either changing jobs or abolishing them.

There was news in the market in March that some employees of Apple's car-building program would be transferred to Apple's artificial intelligence department and others to software engineering. In addition to those who have been transferred, hundreds of members will still face unemployment. Apple executives had doubts about the direction and cost control of the car-building project as to why they had to abandon the car-building plan, which led to the suspension of the car project.

According to the data: Apple's car-building idea first came from Jobs, and the car-building plan began in 2014, during which Apple invested billions of dollars and recruited a number of core executives from companies such as Google, Mercedes-Benz and Tesla, including former Apple design director Jonathan Ivy, and Steve Zadesky, the head of the original iPod. However, it is a pity that Apple's car-building process is not smooth, not only there is no specific car-building plan, but also constantly reported layoffs, frequent changes in executives and other news.

In 2018, with the return of Apple senior expert Doug Field, Apple car-building was able to restart, but Doug then left. In January 2019, Apple announced that it would fire 200 employees of the Titan project team. In the same year, Apple acquired, a self-driving car company, left dozens of engineers involved in engineering and product design, and submitted a number of car patents such as remote control and driving to the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office. At the end of 2020, it was reported that Apple made stock requirements to the auto parts factories in Taiwan, such as Heda, the Federation of Trade, Heqin and Futian, and the first model is expected to be officially unveiled in the third quarter of 2021.

In 2022, it was once again rumored that the car-building team had been disbanded for some time. Guo Mingyi, an analyst at Tianfeng International, has disclosed that if Apple is to achieve its Apple Car production target by 2025, it needs to complete the team restructuring in the next 3-6 months. In December 2023, there were media reports that Apple might abandon the launch of the "L5" fully self-driving car and postpone the market time of the car to 2026. In January, Mark Gurman, a well-known Apple whistleblower, revealed that Apple had postponed the launch of the smart car to 2028. In addition, it was revealed that Apple's board of directors had repeatedly pressed CEO Tim Cook and other Apple executives to submit a plan for smart car development in 2023.

The full sense of technology, "no steering wheel, no brake pedal", was once the biggest highlight of Apple's car promotion. However, due to policy, technology and other reasons, it is not easy for Apple to realize this idea. Cross-border car building is already difficult, and if Apple wants to build a car from scratch, it must be very difficult for Apple, which has no experience in building a car. After all, it is more difficult to control the quality of cars than to control the quality of mobile phones. after all, complex cars are related to travel safety and require tens of thousands of parts to be equipped at the same time. In addition, the car-building project has a large investment and a long return cycle, coupled with the current fierce new energy vehicle market, frequent changes in executives and other factors, it is bound to undermine Apple's confidence in car-building.

Even if Apple can launch its smart car in 2028, it will face fierce competition in the market. For Apple, which has no experience in building cars, it doesn't necessarily have an advantage. In this way, it may be a good thing for Apple to give up building cars altogether. After all, it's hard for Apple cars to gain a foothold in the market without disruptive innovation, so it's better to continue to focus on what you're good at.

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