Rumor: Control of user data railroaded 'Project Titan' talks between Apple and BMW, Daimler

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in Future Apple Hardware
Apple was said to be involved in negotiations with automakers BMW and Daimler, but discussions fell apart because the parties couldn't agree on who would own and protect the data associated with a connected, self-driving car.




Sources who spoke with Germany's Handelsblatt suggested that user privacy may have been a key sticking point between Apple and the carmakers. It was said Apple wanted its own secure iCloud software to be used for data, while the German companies sought to protect customer data themselves.

Apple has had similar disputes in the past, both with wireless carriers and with partners like Google. A fallout with the latter led Apple to build its own mapping service, rather than share customer data with Google.

User security has since become something of a key selling point for Apple's products, with the company repeatedly vowing to protect user data, not sell it. Rivals and partners such as Google and Facebook rely almost exclusively on collecting user data for selling ads.

As for Apple's automotive project, the so-called "Project Titan" is said to be focused on German technology, via an office in Berlin, according to Handelsblatt. With Daimler and BMW apparently out of the picture, Apple's next best target is said to be Magna.




Reports from earlier this week revealed Apple's secret car lab in Berlin keeps a small team of 15 to 20 employees. They are said to be tasked with imagining and realizing vehicles of the future.

Thursday's report described "Project Titan" as a "highly-networked electric car that would also be at least partially self-driving."

BMW has previously expressed caution about sharing information with companies like Apple, out of worry that it might effectively become just another supplier. However, technologies like self-driving systems might demand help from outside parties such as Apple and Google, which are more familiar with software.

Apple and BMW were previously revealed to have held talks about a potential partnership, though it was said that the two parties were not close to an agreement.

In an exclusive report detailing Apple's automotive project last year, AppleInsider revealed "Titan" was operating out of a top secret facility close to the company's campus in Cupertino, Calif. Subsequent reports estimate Apple's stateside team now consists of well over 1,000 employees, including a number of high-profile industry hires. However, AppleInsider sources in February said executives were disappointed with the group's slow progress, prompting a temporary hiring freeze.
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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 37
    mtbnutmtbnut Posts: 195member
    Seems suspect, especially this early on in the project. That's like canning the project now because they couldn't decide on carpet color for the waiting lounge in the dealerships that will be built in 2023. 
  • Reply 2 of 37
    jm6032jm6032 Posts: 147member
      "Railroaded?" Shouldn't that be "Derailed?"
    SpamSandwichanantksundaramjony0
  • Reply 3 of 37
    rob53rob53 Posts: 2,086member
    mtbnut said:
    Seems suspect, especially this early on in the project. That's like canning the project now because they couldn't decide on carpet color for the waiting lounge in the dealerships that will be built in 2023. 
    It might be early but Apple might as well put its critical marbles on the table in the beginning. Since user data is something lots of companies want to have because it can be worth more money in both the short and long term than the actual product they're selling, Apple needs to be up front and demand that user's data is not subject to compromise and certainly not for sale. I want, no I DEMAND, that Apple protect all my data and not let anyone else have access to it. I don't want ads showing up on my auto informational screen, I only want information about the operation of my car and, if my iPhone is plugged in via CarPlay, what I choose to see and access via my iPhone. I just saw an ad for a small car that touted it has the most electronics of anything in its size. I don't want a lot of unnecessary electronics in my car, I want it to run well and not have issues every time there's a stinking computer problem. Keep it simple, make it economical and green to run, and have almost no maintenance. That's my ideal car.
    lostkiwijoshabadmonk
  • Reply 4 of 37
    sirlance99sirlance99 Posts: 1,155member
    sog35 said:
    Good. Apple is better off building a car without legacy companies.

    Its like Apple colaborating with Blackberry in 2007 to build the iPhone. They would only get in the way of progress.

    Here is how Apple will change the car game:

    Your commute to work won't be a torture chamber.
    It will be something you look forward too and will enjoy.
    How will Apple do that? I have no idea. But that is the goal. 
    BMW and for that matter Mercedes are not legacy companies and no where near the likes of what happened to BlackBerry.

    I look forward to getting into my Mercedes when I go to work. If I had a BMW, I'd suspect the same thing. The likes of BMW and Mercedes will still be around long after if/when Apple makes any thing that's a car. These brands pretty much invent almost all car tech that eventually becomes standard in all cars. 

    Plus, Mercedes already has a self driving fleet and is well advanced in research in this area.

    It's not like all of a sudden everyone will buy a Apple car and everyone else will go out of business. Not even close.

    I do hope Apple does come out with something as I'd be highly interested in what they have to offer but,  for me, it Mercedes and Tesla.
    cnocbuiirelandlord amhranbadmonk
  • Reply 5 of 37
    fallenjtfallenjt Posts: 3,980member
    sog35 said:
    Good. Apple is better off building a car without legacy companies.

    Its like Apple colaborating with Blackberry in 2007 to build the iPhone. They would only get in the way of progress.

    Here is how Apple will change the car game:

    Your commute to work won't be a torture chamber.
    It will be something you look forward too and will enjoy.
    How will Apple do that? I have no idea. But that is the goal. 
    BMW and for that matter Mercedes are not legacy companies and no where near the likes of what happened to BlackBerry.

    I look forward to getting into my Mercedes when I go to work. If I had a BMW, I'd suspect the same thing. The likes of BMW and Mercedes will still be around long after if/when Apple makes any thing that's a car. These brands pretty much invent almost all car tech that eventually becomes standard in all cars. 

    Plus, Mercedes already has a self driving fleet and is well advanced in research in this area.

    It's not like all of a sudden everyone will buy a Apple car and everyone else will go out of business. Not even close.

    I do hope Apple does come out with something as I'd be highly interested in what they have to offer but,  for me, it Mercedes and Tesla.
    Well, Daimler alread concerned on their S-Class being outsold by Tesla Model S in their own back yard. Yup, look at data on 2015 sale in Germany. If Merc, BMW don't move forward with EV, their "Blackberry " day will come.
    edited April 2016 anantksundaramirelandbadmonk
  • Reply 6 of 37
    vvswarupvvswarup Posts: 330member
    sog35 said:

    rob53 said:
    It might be early but Apple might as well put its critical marbles on the table in the beginning. Since user data is something lots of companies want to have because it can be worth more money in both the short and long term than the actual product they're selling, Apple needs to be up front and demand that user's data is not subject to compromise and certainly not for sale. I want, no I DEMAND, that Apple protect all my data and not let anyone else have access to it. I don't want ads showing up on my auto informational screen, I only want information about the operation of my car and, if my iPhone is plugged in via CarPlay, what I choose to see and access via my iPhone. I just saw an ad for a small car that touted it has the most electronics of anything in its size. I don't want a lot of unnecessary electronics in my car, I want it to run well and not have issues every time there's a stinking computer problem. Keep it simple, make it economical and green to run, and have almost no maintenance. That's my ideal car.
    Agree with this.

    Car maintenance is such a pain in the azz.  Belts, hoses, hot oils running, literal exposions in the engine, ect.  Its a miracle that car companies have figured out how to make ICE run 100,000+ miles.  With an electric car there is no oil changes, brakes last 2x longer, no belts, exhaust systems, muffllers, ect.  

    Theoretically an electric car should only be in the shop once a year to rotate the tires. And I bet there is a way to make rotating the tires a thing of the past also with software. No more waiting at the shop for the tech to figure out why your car won't start. With electric cars the car itself will tell you whats wrong. 
    Sorry to disappoint you but your pie in the sky is just that-a pie in the sky. A car has moving parts, whether it's electric or gas-powered. There's still a drive shaft, transmission, tires, brakes, etc. I don't know where you're getting this idea that brakes last 2x longer just because a car is an electric car. With moving parts comes wear and tear. That's just the way it is. You can make things last longer but you won't be able to make them last forever. For example, drive over a road filled with potholes and you're going to ruin your wheel alignment. There's a trip to the mechanic. 

    I cannot imagine how software is going to "make rotating tires a thing of the past." People rotate their tires because after driving for a certain number of miles, the tires wear out. Instead of buying four brand-new tires, people get new tires for the wheels that are part of the drivetrain and move the worn out tires to the other two tires, e.g. if the car is front-wheel drive, people buy new tires for the two front wheels and move the worn out tires to the back. Rotating tires is due to mechanical wear and tear. There's no getting around that, unless one eliminates friction somehow. 

    mdriftmeyerireland
  • Reply 7 of 37
    foadfoad Posts: 697member
    vvswarup said:
    sog35 said:

    Agree with this.

    Car maintenance is such a pain in the azz.  Belts, hoses, hot oils running, literal exposions in the engine, ect.  Its a miracle that car companies have figured out how to make ICE run 100,000+ miles.  With an electric car there is no oil changes, brakes last 2x longer, no belts, exhaust systems, muffllers, ect.  

    Theoretically an electric car should only be in the shop once a year to rotate the tires. And I bet there is a way to make rotating the tires a thing of the past also with software. No more waiting at the shop for the tech to figure out why your car won't start. With electric cars the car itself will tell you whats wrong. 
    Sorry to disappoint you but your pie in the sky is just that-a pie in the sky. A car has moving parts, whether it's electric or gas-powered. There's still a drive shaft, transmission, tires, brakes, etc. I don't know where you're getting this idea that brakes last 2x longer just because a car is an electric car. With moving parts comes wear and tear. That's just the way it is. You can make things last longer but you won't be able to make them last forever. For example, drive over a road filled with potholes and you're going to ruin your wheel alignment. There's a trip to the mechanic. 

    I cannot imagine how software is going to "make rotating tires a thing of the past." People rotate their tires because after driving for a certain number of miles, the tires wear out. Instead of buying four brand-new tires, people get new tires for the wheels that are part of the drivetrain and move the worn out tires to the other two tires, e.g. if the car is front-wheel drive, people buy new tires for the two front wheels and move the worn out tires to the back. Rotating tires is due to mechanical wear and tear. There's no getting around that, unless one eliminates friction somehow. 


    True, EV have moving parts that will wear and that there will still things like alignments, but there is an order of a magnitude less number of parts in an EV. A long time ago, GM lobbied the US government to prevent the development of EVs precisely for this reason. They knew that vehicle maintenance was a huge market and didn't want to lose the money.

    An ICE creates so much more heat and requires so many more parts, that they aren't even in the same space as EVs.
    patchythepirateanantksundaramirelandlostkiwicornchipbadmonk
  • Reply 8 of 37
    djsherlydjsherly Posts: 1,022member
    vvswarup said:
    sog35 said:

    Agree with this.

    Car maintenance is such a pain in the azz.  Belts, hoses, hot oils running, literal exposions in the engine, ect.  Its a miracle that car companies have figured out how to make ICE run 100,000+ miles.  With an electric car there is no oil changes, brakes last 2x longer, no belts, exhaust systems, muffllers, ect.  

    Theoretically an electric car should only be in the shop once a year to rotate the tires. And I bet there is a way to make rotating the tires a thing of the past also with software. No more waiting at the shop for the tech to figure out why your car won't start. With electric cars the car itself will tell you whats wrong. 
    Sorry to disappoint you but your pie in the sky is just that-a pie in the sky. A car has moving parts, whether it's electric or gas-powered. There's still a drive shaft, transmission, tires, brakes, etc. I don't know where you're getting this idea that brakes last 2x longer just because a car is an electric car. With moving parts comes wear and tear. That's just the way it is. You can make things last longer but you won't be able to make them last forever. For example, drive over a road filled with potholes and you're going to ruin your wheel alignment. There's a trip to the mechanic. 

    I cannot imagine how software is going to "make rotating tires a thing of the past." People rotate their tires because after driving for a certain number of miles, the tires wear out. Instead of buying four brand-new tires, people get new tires for the wheels that are part of the drivetrain and move the worn out tires to the other two tires, e.g. if the car is front-wheel drive, people buy new tires for the two front wheels and move the worn out tires to the back. Rotating tires is due to mechanical wear and tear. There's no getting around that, unless one eliminates friction somehow. 

    Agree that moving parts are always an issue when it comes to wear but I am sure there are creative solutions to things like wheel alignment. Sensors could detect this and use small motors to adjust it in real time. 

    Using the braking energy to charge the battery will cause less energy to be dissipated into brakes, lengthening their life. 

    Most at if not all electric only cars have motors which directly drive the wheels. No transmission per se.

    rotating tyres could be minimised particularly in 4wd cars by adjusting the torque sent to each wheel. I'd wager it would still have to be done but maintenance would be reduced. 
    lostkiwicornchipbadmonk
  • Reply 9 of 37
    bsimpsenbsimpsen Posts: 300member
    vvswarup said:
    I don't know where you're getting this idea that brakes last 2x longer just because a car is an electric car.
    2x sounds reasonable. The regenerative braking of electric vehicles takes quite a load off the friction brakes.

    http://www.electric-vehiclenews.com/2016/03/are-friction-brakes-redundant-on.html
    anantksundaramlostkiwibadmonk
  • Reply 10 of 37
    volcanvolcan Posts: 1,791member
    foad said:

     A long time ago, GM lobbied the US government to prevent the development of EVs precisely for this reason. They knew that vehicle maintenance was a huge market and didn't want to lose the money.
    So instead they built cars that didn't need any service for 100,000 miles.
    badmonk
  • Reply 11 of 37
    rob53rob53 Posts: 2,086member
    vvswarup said:
    sog35 said:

    Agree with this.

    Car maintenance is such a pain in the azz.  Belts, hoses, hot oils running, literal exposions in the engine, ect.  Its a miracle that car companies have figured out how to make ICE run 100,000+ miles.  With an electric car there is no oil changes, brakes last 2x longer, no belts, exhaust systems, muffllers, ect.  

    Theoretically an electric car should only be in the shop once a year to rotate the tires. And I bet there is a way to make rotating the tires a thing of the past also with software. No more waiting at the shop for the tech to figure out why your car won't start. With electric cars the car itself will tell you whats wrong. 
    Sorry to disappoint you but your pie in the sky is just that-a pie in the sky. A car has moving parts, whether it's electric or gas-powered. There's still a drive shaft, transmission, tires, brakes, etc. I don't know where you're getting this idea that brakes last 2x longer just because a car is an electric car. With moving parts comes wear and tear. That's just the way it is. You can make things last longer but you won't be able to make them last forever. For example, drive over a road filled with potholes and you're going to ruin your wheel alignment. There's a trip to the mechanic. 
    You need some education. Good EV cars don't have a regular transmission or drive shaft, at least not like old rear wheel drive cars. Tesla's motor and one-speed transmission/gearbox is mounted between the rear wheels (and front wheels on AWD models) with a simple transaxle to the wheels. Check out this article to see why the Tesla, the best example of an EV, requires so little maintenance. Check out the comments and see the types of uninformed comments this site has: http://www.motorauthority.com/news/1087086_tesla-model-s-maintenance-almost-none-required-actually. One commenter was worried about the air filter, which the Tesla doesn't have except (maybe) for the AC unit.

    You're right about moving parts creating wear and tear but there are so many fewer moving parts in a properly designed EV that service calls will go down. As for an alignment, it all depends on how the undercarriage has been designed and built and how good your suspension is. 
    anantksundaramlostkiwibadmonk
  • Reply 12 of 37
    volcanvolcan Posts: 1,791member
    rob53 said:

    Good EV cars don't have a regular transmission or drive shaft, at least not like old rear wheel drive cars. Tesla's motor and one-speed transmission/gearbox is mounted between the rear wheels (and front wheels on AWD models) with a simple transaxle to the wheels. 
    Tesla does have a drivetrain with lots of moving parts. In fact that is one area where they have had problems requiring service. But that is not all. They have many issues with all sorts of parts including the computer console, climate control, steering, suspension, chargers, as well as body and sunroof leaks, rattles, corrosion, not to mention battery fires, etc. This according to CR which formerly gave the Model S its best rating, a year later the problems began to surface and they no longer recommend the car.

    You may not need any oil changes but maintenance free is a myth.
    badmonk
  • Reply 13 of 37
    mtbnut said:
    Seems suspect, especially this early on in the project. That's like canning the project now because they couldn't decide on carpet color for the waiting lounge in the dealerships that will be built in 2023. 
    User privacy vs carpet. 

    Um... No. 

    Totally different ball game. 
  • Reply 14 of 37
    Apple wants to keep our data private? Really? Does the definition of private mean as long as everything is on their corporate servers? 

    Is there privacy creep in every iOS & MacOS update? Why don't people seem more concerned about this?  I can preference all iCloud off save find my iPhone, yet if I turn that off & on, all data is again set to go to Apple ?  'Safari opens with: a new private window' setting in Safari is designed to override off links, such as from an email, linking data trails... Really?

    How about all those fun little photos users can add to their contacts address book without the knowledge of the 'friends'...

    Does the USSA (united surveillance state of america) need to contemplate beyond face value ?


    roger wade
  • Reply 15 of 37
    fallenjtfallenjt Posts: 3,980member
    vvswarup said:
    sog35 said:

    Agree with this.

    Car maintenance is such a pain in the azz.  Belts, hoses, hot oils running, literal exposions in the engine, ect.  Its a miracle that car companies have figured out how to make ICE run 100,000+ miles.  With an electric car there is no oil changes, brakes last 2x longer, no belts, exhaust systems, muffllers, ect.  

    Theoretically an electric car should only be in the shop once a year to rotate the tires. And I bet there is a way to make rotating the tires a thing of the past also with software. No more waiting at the shop for the tech to figure out why your car won't start. With electric cars the car itself will tell you whats wrong. 
    Sorry to disappoint you but your pie in the sky is just that-a pie in the sky. A car has moving parts, whether it's electric or gas-powered. There's still a drive shaft, transmission, tires, brakes, etc. I don't know where you're getting this idea that brakes last 2x longer just because a car is an electric car. With moving parts comes wear and tear. That's just the way it is. You can make things last longer but you won't be able to make them last forever. For example, drive over a road filled with potholes and you're going to ruin your wheel alignment. There's a trip to the mechanic. 

    I cannot imagine how software is going to "make rotating tires a thing of the past." People rotate their tires because after driving for a certain number of miles, the tires wear out. Instead of buying four brand-new tires, people get new tires for the wheels that are part of the drivetrain and move the worn out tires to the other two tires, e.g. if the car is front-wheel drive, people buy new tires for the two front wheels and move the worn out tires to the back. Rotating tires is due to mechanical wear and tear. There's no getting around that, unless one eliminates friction somehow. 

    Rotating tires is already thing of the past on performing cars. You guy need to learn some more about performing tires in stagger setup
  • Reply 16 of 37
    It's a freaking car. 

    No one needs my user data no matter how connected it is. 

    Soldier on Apple. 
    edited April 2016
  • Reply 17 of 37
    dcgoodcgoo Posts: 215member
    volcan said:
    Tesla does have a drivetrain with lots of moving parts. In fact that is one area where they have had problems requiring service. But that is not all. They have many issues with all sorts of parts including the computer console, climate control, steering, suspension, chargers, as well as body and sunroof leaks, rattles, corrosion, not to mention battery fires, etc. This according to CR which formerly gave the Model S its best rating, a year later the problems began to surface and they no longer recommend the car.

    You may not need any oil changes but maintenance free is a myth.

    The Tesla drivetrain is a fixed ratio (single speed) gear reduction drive between the motor and the wheels.  Two of them if you have the D model (dual motor).  There are no gears, shifting, clutch or torque converter.   So very simple in comparison to that multi-speed automatic in an ICE car.  

    There is NO mandatory scheduled maintenance on a Tesla at all.  They encourage owners to have the car inspected annually, but it is not required to maintain the warranty.  If you drive rationally, you rarely have to touch the brakes. The regenerative braking will bring the car to a complete stop with normal braking lead times by just taking your foot off the accelerator.

    I do not think there have been any issues with sun roof, rattles or corrosion (the body is aluminum). The battery is warranted for 8 years, unlimited miles.

    The only thing that some folks might consider high maintainence are the tires. They still roll down the pavement. The car is very heavy and very powerful.  Those two things together = tire wear.  Especially on the Performance models.  Those 2.6 sec launches to 60 MPH, are hard on tires, even though the tesla never breaks traction nor leaves any visible rubber on the road (mine is not the P model).

    But you are correct, totally maintenance free is a myth.  But it is a tiny fraction of that required by most ICE cars.  That is why the traditional manufacturers are struggling with selling EVs.  The Car DEALERS live by their service departments.  Why on earth would they be interested in selling something that has almost no maintenance required?   Thus even if GM, Ford, or whoever, made the best EV ever conceived, it will be difficult to get the dealers to *try* to sell them.
    anantksundaramlostkiwi
  • Reply 18 of 37
    Well, it's their wont to do so, but BMW and Daimler-Benz have railroaded derailed me as a customer. Both are off my list for the next car. Period. 
    edited April 2016 lostkiwicornchip
  • Reply 19 of 37
    gatorguygatorguy Posts: 21,112member
    Well, it's their wont to do so, but BMW and Daimler-Benz have railroaded derailed me as a customer. Both are off my list for the next car. Period. 
    Why? Any Apple car is years away from being something you could buy. If it's the"we don't wish to partner with Apple" thing Apple is gonna do what Apple is gonna do anyway. It's not like they don't already have the resources. 

  • Reply 20 of 37
    sirlance99sirlance99 Posts: 1,155member
    It's a freaking car. 

    No one needs my user data no matter how connected it is. 

    Soldier on Apple. 
    And you don't think that Apple will be collecting data on you and your car? If Apple knows how many times you unlock your iPhone they sure as heck will know everything about your car as well. 
    lord amhran
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