The much-rumored Apple car is said to be an electric vehicle with self-driving capabilities. And one of the biggest concerns for electric vehicle owners is the ability to quickly charge their cars away from home. Multiple sources familiar with the matter told Reuters that Apple had started laying the groundwork for charging infrastructure and related software necessary to power the Apple car.
Apple talking to charging station firms
Reuters added that the Cupertino company is talking to charging station companies and hiring engineers with related expertise. There is a shortage of public charging stations, and it takes a huge amount of time to fill up the batteries. Apple could turn these issues into an opportunity. The company has been asking charging station firms about their underlying technology.
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However, charging firms see Apple as a potential competitor. So, they are wary of sharing too much with the iPhone maker. It is still unclear whether Apple will build its own charging system like Tesla’s Supercharger network or it will tie up with third-party charging stations. Apple has hired several EV charging specialists including Rónán Ó Braonáin, a former BMW employee.
Apple car to offer a seamless customer experience
According to the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL), California currently has about 8,000 charging stations. The state is projected to have more than 1 million EVs on the road by 2020. The NREL estimates that there must be between 100,000 and 200,000 charging stations in California by 2020 to support all those EVs. The Apple car is rumored to start shipping in 2020 with a price tag of roughly $75,000.
The Apple car, code-named Project Titan, has been in the works for more than a year. Apple has leased or bought several real-estate properties in California to develop and test its electric vehicle. The company was recently hunting for an 800,000-square foot space for the Apple car project. Charging infrastructure will be of paramount importance given Apple’s focus on creating a seamless customer experience.