After a couple of years of intense rumor, it seemed certain that Apple had an autonomous (or any) vehicle-related announcement up its sleeve, ready to unveil at any time. In fact, it could be argued that Apple's foray into electric vehicles has been one of the most rumored projects on the planet. And even though it's become obvious that Apple has been working on something related to EVs, it's stuck to its guns to remain mum on its progress, or even its existence.
And just when we thought that Apple was actually close to announcing something, it's reportedly rebooting the project. This would come just a couple of months after Apple brought back Bob Mansfield to head the project.
According to sources close to The New York Times, Mansfield was brought in to adjust the project's focus. Apple allegedly decided at that time to focus more on the underlying software for autonomous vehicles, rather than focus on the entire package.
It's not hard to grasp why Apple would decide to reduce its load a bit with this project, but it is an interesting move nonetheless, as a huge number of Apple's competitors are currently hustling on their own EV and autonomous projects. Google has been testing self-driving cars for years, and even Tesla has autonomous driving features available to consumers today.
Let's just hope that what doesn't ultimately happen here is that Apple decides to bow out of the autonomous market entirely. Competition is a great thing, especially if it comes from a company that's as keen on refinement as Apple.