Latest Apple mystery van sightings occur in California, Florida, Hawaii, Arizona [u]

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  • Reply 41 of 60
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Dick Applebaum View Post





    Or RueVue ... a French double entendre image



    I think you'll rue the day RueVue is in view.

  • Reply 42 of 60
    Or RueVue ... a French double entendre :D


    I think you'd rue the day RueVue was in view.

    Or Google will!

    poo poo pee doo
  • Reply 43 of 60
    dasanman69dasanman69 Posts: 13,002member
    "MapDeets"?

    You can MapDeets nuts :lol:
  • Reply 44 of 60
    irelandireland Posts: 17,798member
    I recently downloaded the 28 keynote address videos Apple has on iTunes to watch history unfold.

    While watching the <span style="line-height:1.4em;">Macworld San Francisco 2008 Keynote Address by Steve Jobs, I had to laugh about how excited he was about Apple being able to sell 4 million iPhones in </span>
    the United States<span style="line-height:1.4em;"> in the first 200 days of the iPhone's release!</span>


    <span style="line-height:1.4em;">What made me stop watching the keynote to add a comment here starts at 17:50 minutes into the keynote.</span>


    Here is what Steve Jobs had to say about Skyhook Wireless being used in an iPhone that did not have a GPS chip... "d<span style="line-height:1.4em;">riven the US and Canada in little cars with  antennas on them and GPS receivers in them and they mapped Wi-Fi hotspots.... Europe and Asia... triangulate beacons...".</span>


    At that time, Google was triangulating cell towers.

    Apple Maps just might be getting a major upgrade later this year in iOS 9!

    There's no conspiracy. Apple are adding a street view. No biggie.
  • Reply 45 of 60
    crowley wrote: »
    What's the weird thing on the rear wheel? Is that normal?

    I think it's the chassis of the car.
  • Reply 46 of 60
    crowleycrowley Posts: 10,453member
    Shut up Frost
  • Reply 47 of 60

    I hope they call it DriveBy.

  • Reply 48 of 60
    mstonemstone Posts: 11,510member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by squareback View Post

     

    I hope they call it DriveBy.


    Yeah I thought of that as well but too much gang, Never gonna' happen.

  • Reply 49 of 60
    jccjcc Posts: 333member
    That means this can't be for iCar. There's no need to have test cars in multiple locations. This is definitely for their maps.
  • Reply 50 of 60
    jcc wrote: »
    That means this can't be for iCar. There's no need to have test cars in multiple locations. This is definitely for their maps.

    Because roads, and driving situations are exactly the same everywhere.
  • Reply 51 of 60
    mpantonempantone Posts: 2,104member
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by zoetmb View Post



    So Apple is enhancing Maps, but only in places that have warm climates?



    Driving a street mapping vehicle in poor road conditions is inefficient. These vehicles are designed to record street views at the limit. Crawling around in bumper to bumper traffic due to inclement weather conditions is just a waste of fuel, time, and money. 

  • Reply 52 of 60
    mr omr o Posts: 1,046member

    What if Apple bought Tesla?

     

    Here's 9 reasons why they should.

     

    In a way, 'Tesla' could remain 'Tesla'. Just like 'beats' remains 'beats'. It would be a clever way of Apple to buy themselves into the electric mobility industry without diluting their core activity. Both could learn a thing or two about battery technology. 

  • Reply 53 of 60
    mr omr o Posts: 1,046member
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by mr O View Post

     

    What if Apple bought Tesla?

     

    Here's 9 reasons why they should.

     

    In a way, 'Tesla' could remain 'Tesla'. Just like 'beats' remains 'beats'. It would be a clever way of Apple to buy themselves into the electric mobility industry without diluting their core activity. Both could learn a thing or two about battery technology. 




    If for whatever reason the link doesn't load, here's the cached version of the article:



     

    9 reasons why I think Apple might buy Tesla




    Apple plus Tesla logos

    Promo image Apple/Tesla logos



    Forget about Apple vs. Tesla, what about Apple + Tesla?

    It's an interesting idea. Various people have suggested in recent years that Apple should buy Tesla (or Twitter, or Netflix, or whatever), but it never made sense to me. It just seemed like "Well, Apple has all this cash, let's find a shopping list of popular companies that they could buy with it." Apple had never shown interest in making cars, and Elon Musk didn't seem interested in selling (more on that below), so the pairing seemed implausible.

    But in light of recent developments, I'm starting to rethink things. Here are some reasons why:

    1) Multiple credible sources have revealed that Apple is in fact interested in making cars, and not just any car, but an electric car. We don't know what it'll look like (I don't believe the "minivan" rumor), or if it'll be self-driving, but we know that Apple cares enough about this category to build a team of hundreds (some reports say over a thousand) of talented people, poaching employees from other companies (including many from Tesla). Since Apple is already spread thin between its existing products, taking resources away from them mean that they're serious.

    And from Apple's point of view, not only would they be acquiring a tremendously talented team, great products, and a superb brand, but they would also be turning a competitor into an ally.

    Tesla/Promo image

    2) Elon Musk has said multiple times that his goal with Tesla is to change the industry and push forward electric cars (which can use clean energy directly). People might not believe him, but I do. If he just wanted to get rich, there were a million easier way than to create a new car startup (none had been successful for almost a century) that not only had to compete with giants, but also to do it using an entirely different technology that the general public didn't even trust at the time.

    So Musk has said that he didn't think he would have to be involved in EVs. He thought GM would just keep going after the EV1, and eventually the EV3 or EV4 would be good enough and cheap enough for most people and that would be it, gasoline cars would be on the way out over time, and Musk could focus on going to Mars and other projects. But large automakers abandoned EVs, or did them half-heartedly (they didn't make electric version of their most popular models, they tried to keep it mostly niche). So Elon Musk would never sell Tesla to a big automaker, because he wouldn't trust them to do things the right way. Also, most big automakers probably couldn't afford Tesla; they are very large companies, but many recently went bankrupt or came close. Large revenues doesn't mean large profits...

    3) Except at Apple. It would be a stretch for most automakers to try to buy Tesla at any premium to the market price, but Apple could easily afford it with just a quarter or two in profits. And if Apple shows a commitment to electric cars, that could convince Elon Musk that Tesla would be in good hands at Apple.

    4) Apple also has the capital to help Tesla grow into a mainstream company that will change the world and help push the internal combustion engine into the recycling bin. The biggest challenge for Tesla is that if they face big problems scaling up, they might run out of capital (and lose the confidence of Wall Street). This is the fate of many fast-growing young companies, and in fact, Tesla almost went Bankrupt during the 2009 financial crisis. But if they are backed by Apple's balance sheet, then the only risk is execution (making good products). Building up factories for the Model 3 and other subsequent models, investing in R&D, building out service centers, Supercharging Stations, etc. All that would only cost Apple its pocket change.

    5) Until recently, Apple had never done big multi-billion-dollar acquisitions, and never had a non-Apple brand as a major part of the company. But last year they acquired Beats and kept the Beats brand separate. This makes me think that a similar thing could happen; if Apple were to acquire Tesla, I think they would keep the Tesla brand (which is extremely strong) and just sell all their electric vehicles under that badge.

    Wikimedia/CC BY-SA 3.0

    6) Gasoline cars would never interest Apple. But electric cars are different beasts altogether. As I wrote here:

    vehicles have been moving in the direction of computers for a while now. They used to be all about mechanical attributes, like valves and pistons and crankshafts, but now, electric cars are becoming more about software, user interface, and batteries, all areas of expertise for the fruit company.

    In a world where cars will increasingly be giant batteries with electric motors (above is a Tesla Model S drivetrain and battery), the differentiation will become more about design and these very things, in the same way that in a world of smartphones that are all glass rectangles, most of the differentiation comes from the user interface and software (hardware matters a lot too, but it's not sufficient on its own, as HTC realized). (source)

    © Tesla

    7) Tesla doesn't just see itself as an electric car company. It sees itself as an "energy innovation company". Apple is one of the biggest users of batteries in the world (for phones, tablets, laptops, soon watches), and any advantage that they can squeeze in battery tech would help them a lot. Apple would have the capital to help Tesla invest in more battery Gigafactories and more battery R&D, which would benefit both electric cars sold by the company and other consumer electronics.

    © Tesla

    8) Tim Cook obviously cares more about the environment than Steve Jobs ever did (or at least, than he had time to show --- maybe over time we'd have discovered a deeper commitment). We saw a glimpse of that this year, and even Greenpeace can't help by praise the company for its environmental leadership in the industry. Apple has been investing massively in solar power, so an investment in a clean transportation company that has similar interests (Tesla also likes to power almost everything with clean energy) would make sense on that front (in the way that investment in a gasoline car company wouldn't, for example).

    Apple Inc./Promo image

    9) Corporate culture matters. Elon Musk has said many times that Apple is a model for Tesla. Both companies are centered around design and engineering, they integrate vertically, designing everything, manufacturing the most important parts, writing their own software, creating a strong brand and customer support experience via company-owned stores, etc.

    If Tesla was bought by Apple, there probably wouldn't be a big culture clash. In fact, both companies have been poaching each other's employees because they have similar ways of thinking about things and similarly high standards.

     

    Bottom line

    I'm not saying this is inevitable, or even more likely than not. But my thinking on this possibility has evolved, and I now think it makes more sense than before. I'd estimate the probability of this happening within the next 5 years at around 20-25%. What do you think?


  • Reply 54 of 60
    Looking forward to Apple Street View van over in Malaysia-Singapore in the near future... ????
  • Reply 55 of 60
    Wheel-mounted distance measuring devices have been around for decades. Measuring to 1/100th of a mile often. Most state hwy dept have a few.

    I imagine the antenna is feeding recording devices in van + iCloud.
  • Reply 56 of 60
    jccjcc Posts: 333member
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by dasanman69 View Post





    Because roads, and driving situations are exactly the same everywhere.



    You must not know anything about building cars? Do you ever read car mags like road and track? If you do you would see that most manufacturers test locally first with their prototypes. Many times they'll disguise it.  The fact that they're just getting started with building a car I doubt very much this has anything to do with it. It's more probably that this is going towards improving maps. That why the need for those vans in multiple cities. Probably to improve their 3D maps as many of them have broken or collapsed bridges and roads.

  • Reply 57 of 60
    jcc wrote: »

    You must not know anything about building cars? Do you ever read car mags like road and track? If you do you would see that most manufacturers test locally first with their prototypes. Many times they'll disguise it.  The fact that they're just getting started with building a car I doubt very much this has anything to do with it. It's more probably that this is going towards improving maps. That why the need for those vans in multiple cities. Probably to improve their 3D maps as many of them have broken or collapsed bridges and roads.

    Prototype, or 'secret' cars are built by long established manufacturers with years of experience building cars for its intents, and purposes. I agree that it's most likely for mapping, but it is not unreasonable to think that they could be testing a self driving vehicle in real world conditions.
  • Reply 58 of 60
    jccjcc Posts: 333member
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by dasanman69 View Post





    Prototype, or 'secret' cars are built by long established manufacturers with years of experience building cars for its intents, and purposes. I agree that it's most likely for mapping, but it is not unreasonable to think that they could be testing a self driving vehicle in real world conditions.



    Again, that's absurd. You don't see Google testing their cars all over the place do you? You simply don't need to do that. Apple is so early in their process that there' simple no need to do that.Google after a decade of testing their self driving cars still don't test it except around campus.

     

    Again, the most logical reason for these vans is to better their maps. Besides, we've all seen these cars with the hardware attached for maps. Google, NavTech, Nokia, etc all had these vehicles all over the world driving around. So why when the answer is staring you right in the face do you instead want to believe some fantastical tale about an iCar? Ockham's Razor.

  • Reply 59 of 60
    chris_cachris_ca Posts: 2,543member
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by SpamSandwich View Post

    Please just let them do their job, folks. We know what a "sensor-laden van" looks like already.

    Because someone taking a photo as it drives by is preventing them from doing their job?

     

    Perhaps you mean, “Hey AI! We don’t need a play by play for every van someone sees…"

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