“When it comes to the glorious new future of self-driving cars, I’m something of a bear,” Megan McArdle writes for Bloomberg View. “”
“Not a radical skeptic, mind you: I think self-driving cars are coming, eventually. I just think that ‘eventually’ might be further off than people suggest. Getting to “level-four” automation — where the car drives itself, all the time, with no human input — is still a formidable challenge,” McArdle writes. “Getting to level-three automation, where the car mostly drives itself most of the time, seems imminent. But the actual advantages of level-three automation over cruise control and early warning systems seem dubious. If people are distracted when the car needs them to take over, then level-three automation could end up being more dangerous than the older systems. And if people aren’t distracted, which is to say they are grimly staring at the road with nothing to do for hours at a stretch, then it seems worse than actually driving the car.”
MacDailyNews Take: Exactly.
“Nonetheless, I do think fully self-driving cars are coming; I just think they’ll be coming closer to 2030 than 2020. Even a fashionably late arrival, however, raises an interesting question: Who will own the business?” McArdle writes. “The candidates are essentially four: Uber, Tesla, traditional car companies, or traditional Silicon Valley firms such as Apple and Google… So who wins? Trick question! My best guess is that it will be a combination: Uber will win dispatch (if it’s still around), and traditional automakers are likely to be making the cars, but the self-driving system may well be purchased from Google or Apple.”
Read more in the full article here.
MacDailyNews Take: Anyone who thinks Apple will end up selling an operating system to third parties knows absolutely nothing about Apple.
If it shakes out anything like McArdle imagines, Google will be supplying an operating system — that attempts to vaguely mimic Apple’s product(s) — to vehicle makers that’s designed to track its users in order to sell advertising.
Apple will reap 95% of the vehicle market’s profits with less than 20% unit share.
Vehicle makers will go out of business or rapidly consolidate in order to survive.
Everyone who doesn’t have an Apple vehicle will lust for them either openly or secretly, some while vocally denouncing Apple and their coveted products at every opportunity in order to assuage their raging inferiority complexes.
[Thanks to MacDailyNews Reader “Rainy Day” for the heads up.]