“Last week, we reported on the autonomous-driving partnership between Apple Inc. and Volkswagen,” Bret Kenwell writes for TheStreet. “Despite being two of the largest companies in their respective industries, the current partnership is rather dismissable. As it stands, Volkswagen is producing T6 Transporter vans, which Apple is using to retrofit with its self-driving sensors and software.”

“It’s not for commercial development or consumer use — at least not yet. It will be used to transport Apple employees between its headquarters,” Kenwell writes. “Even that project is unlikely to be finished this year, according to sources.”

“Of course, it’s very early in the autonomous driving race. But that doesn’t mean Apple should let its competition get too far ahead of it. After all, at some point they may not be able to catch up. Short of acquiring an automaker or big-tech company already making inroads, though, what should Apple do?” Kenwell writes. “The company has the financial firepower to be a leader in the area, practically overnight if it were that committed. Instead, maybe it should focus on the inside of the car. After all, Apple is used to controlling the customer experience, right?”

Read more in the full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: While certainly not perfect, Apple is still a damn sight better than another other company when it comes to user experience. As in-vehicle electronics and features proliferate, we’d certainly want that Apple experience to be extended throughout the entire vehicle and not just be limited to the display via CarPlay as it is today.

SEE ALSO:
Apple’s autonomous vehicle fleet grows to 62 vehicles in California – May 29, 2018
Apple’s autonomous vehicle project may be closer to fruition than it appears – May 25, 2018
Google buys 20,000 SUVs, Apple gets two dozen VW vans – May 24, 2018
Volkswagen looks to Apple for electric-car design guidance – February 16, 2018
Apple said to develop car operating system in Canada – October 25, 2016
Apple scales back ‘Project Titan,’ effort no longer includes building own car – October 17, 2016
Apple’s Bob Mansfield reboots Apple Car project, lays off several dozen employees – September 10, 2016
South Korea company’s never-before-revealed battery technology expected to be Apple Car’s ‘secret weapon’ – August 9, 2016
Apple Car: Everything we know about Apple’s mysterious ‘Project Titan’ – July 29, 2016
Apple Car: An operating system licensed to other auto-makers? – July 29, 2016
Apple hires founder of QNX with Apple Car project increasing focus on self-driving software – July 28, 2016
Apple taps Bob Mansfield to oversee Apple Car project – July 25, 2016
Beleaguered Volkswagen hires expert in self-driving cars from Apple’s ‘Project Titan’ – November 10, 2015