Apple Car: Jony Ive unhappy with ‘Project Titan’ progress, Apple implements hiring freeze, source says

“Apple has placed a hiring freeze on the team responsible for the company’s nascent automotive ambitions after executives became unhappy with the project’s direction and progress,” Sam Oliver reports for AppleInsider.

“The change was precipitated by a post-holiday progress review conducted by Apple design chief Jony Ive, according to a previously reliable source with knowledge of the team’s activities. Ive is said to have “expressed his displeasure” with the group’s headway,” Oliver reports. “In all, Apple is believed to have more than 1,000 people working on Project Titan at sites both inside and outside of Cupertino.”

“The news comes days after a report that Steve Zadesky, a longtime Apple engineering lead who was initially put in charge of Project Titan, would leave the company,” Oliver reports. “It’s not immediately clear whether Zadesky’s departure — said to be for ‘personal reasons'” — is related to the staffing restrictions.”

Read more in the full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: Is this just a pothole, a proverbial bump in the road, or a roadblock?

Or could it just be that Jony is issuing a wake up call to the Project Titan troops?

SEE ALSO:
Daimler CEO says met with Apple in California for ‘concrete talks’ – January 24, 2016
Apple’s ‘Project Titan’ honcho to leave the company; ‘Huge loss for Apple’ says Tony Fadell – January 23, 2016
Apple veteran Steve Zadesky overseeing electric-car project leaving company – January 22, 2016
Apple is building their largest startup ever – October 1, 2015
Why it’s time for an Apple Car – October 1, 2015
The deeper reason for an Apple Car – September 23, 2015
Volkswagen emissions scandal spotlights need for an Apple Car – September 23, 2015
Morgan Stanley: Apple Car, if true, ‘one of the most important moments in transportation’ – September 22, 2015
Former GM Vice Chairman Bob Lutz: Apple Car ‘is going to be a gigantic money pit’ – September 22, 2015
Apple speeds up electric-car efforts, aims for 2019 ‘ship date’ – September 21, 2015
Apple meets California DMV officials to discuss ‘autonomous vehicle’ – September 18, 2015
Documents confirm Apple is building self-driving car, Project Titan further along than many suspect – August 14, 2015
Apple Car development proceeds apace – July 27, 2015
Apple hires veteran Fiat Chrysler auto industry executive – July 20, 2015
What’s up with Carl Icahn’s sudden obsession with the Apple Car? – May 18, 2015
Survey: 77% of hybrid or electric vehicle owners would likely buy an Apple Car – May 13, 2015
Apple’s ‘Project Titan’ could reshape the auto world – February 22, 2015

30 Comments

  1. I have my own theory about why decline happens at companies…. The company does a great job, innovates and becomes a monopoly or close to it in some field, and then the quality of the product becomes less important. The company starts valuing the great salesmen, because they’re the ones who can move the needle on revenues, not the product engineers and designers. So the salespeople end up running the company…. When the sales guys run the company, the product guys don’t matter so much, and a lot of them just turn off.

        1. Or that Apple has unaccountably become like typical corporations: protecting its cash cows at the expense of innovation and everything else, governed by visionless executives and a corpulent board of directors accountable only to avaricious shareholders, and by disparate teams huddled in silos goosing their own P/L statements and undermining the others.

  2. sounds like something Steve Jobs would do. Much better to put on the brakes and stop going down the wrong road.. Go ahead Jonny take control and get apple back on track

  3. Just remember that Tesla and others are not making any money on electric vehicles. Additionally, the decreased oil prices are going to be in place for an extended period. Hybrids and electric only car sales will faulter when you put the additional expense and range limit issues(elec.) into the mix with time to recover expense.

    AppleCAR future rests in the car cabin. I want to be able to get into my car and have my iPhone screen and features bluetoothed into the car systems regardless of vehicle manufacturer…..

    1. … And Tesla has had to two big problems show up in their recent cars during the last two months. This is life on the bleeding edge. Customers are essentially beta testers. Apple is, apparently, nowhere near alpha testing.

    2. Tesla (and Apple idc) are not selling cars into a market that is price sensitve on pump prices for gas. They are selling to those who want the latest, greenest, head turner etc.

      The question is whether Apple is going for a change similar to that of the iPhone vs Motorola 360 or if it is just a little bit further down the road Tesla has marked out.

  4. Several things.

    It’s better to get the problems solved now, while there’s still time, then wait and have a disaster later.

    I recently saw “The Big Short.” It made me sick to my stomach. Although I found the characters likable. These are the same kinds of guys which are betting against Apple. On the one hand in the movie, they were a great bellwether, to the housing bubble collapse.

    From the outside looking in, when it comes to Apple, I can’t help but think these guys are capable of cheating and lying to make the spread.

    As it is, we know the system is broken. We know there are both idiots and geniuses running Wall Street.

    I can’t wait for the day where honesty prevails, if ever. I certainly do not want things to collapse, but I am sick of the dark side of exploitation. Who can we trust?

  5. The full article mentions a possible partnership between Apple and BMW, which could be very significant development. Personally, I don’t think Apple has a snowball’s chance in Hell of designing a successful automobile without the help of a company that actually knows how to design and build cars.

    1. IDK. The Tesla roadster was based on an existing car from a well respected company (Lotus). Elon Musk is on record saying he regrets not just starting with a blank sheet of paper. It will only be a benefit to Apple if they partner with a legacy car producer that can accept how little they will bring to the table. ICE manufacturers just don’t get BEVs.

      They said, the lessons from “The Mythical Man Month” seem to be in play. You need just there right leader to keep all the cats headed in the same direction, and a 1000 creative anythings may have more solutions than anyone can sort out.

  6. There’s that every wonderful fourth step in any project known as:

    VERIFICATION

    It’s when, after progress in the project, it is analyzed whether the project has actually fulfilled the purpose of the project, which is to solve step one, identifying a problem or situation that requires attention. In this case it, apparently, is the Car.

    No verification = No success. Verification is iterative. Expect failures along the path of every project. Go back to step two, figuring out a solution. Then return to step three again, the implementation. Then verify again…

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