Ajinkya Goyal

@ajinkya.goyal

On Apple wading deeper into the autonomous car industry

The best image of Apple’s car I could find fuzzed up at this size, so here’s some other image

Op-Ed

Tesla’s recent Semi Truck and Roadster event revealed further groundbreaking developments in the autonomous car industry. With the new Semi Truck being more than 40% more efficient than a regular truck, and the new Roadster besting oil engine cars in every possible way, the event could quite confidently be filed under ‘Success’. Not to mention the fact that they both look amazing.

If, for some reason, you’ve been unable to watch it or read about the revelations thus far, check out this nine minute summary The Verge published.

Following that, almost as a direct response, Apple unveiled more of its self-driving technology and AI developments (Apple’s blog dedicated to recording its AI ventures: Apple Machine Learning Journal) to a chosen two hundred.

I’m glad to see that Apple is working on its AI, because Siri needs a lot of work. It rarely registers my commands correctly and needs a lot of improvements. Some new add-ons would be great too.

My opinion on their escapade into the world of self-driving cars though, is a bit double-edged. Here’s my no-bias review, of what I’m expecting from them (or at least, as little bias as I can manage).

Got this from CNN, don’t know how much truth there is in this design

The good

Always good to start with some positivity, right? Apple’s car, is almost definitely going to be the best designed one on the market. At Apple, they focus heavily on the design, and simplicity is one of their main agendas for every product.

The car is going to come with a pretty sleek interface, allowing the user to effortlessly control input information and get to wherever it is they want to go. I think they’ll take the Mac’s OS, and tweak it a bit, in the interest of maximising user familiarity and ease of use.

The bad

Apple’s products are known to be expensive. They’re definitely premium products, with a price tag that goes hand-in-hand with that statement. In fact, some reports suggest that the firm makes a 200% profit per iPhone. The same is probably going to ensue with their driverless car. That being said, their cars will, inevitablely, sell. But not because they’re going to be better than what’s out there already, or because they’re going to be more affordable. No.

It’s because they’re Apple. Somehow, they’ve managed to captivate an exceedingly large audience despite being priced at the very highest end of the spectrum. It’s something that pisses me off more than it should, but I can’t do anything about it either way.

It’s also going to feature an exceedingly annoying voice assistant. It’ll tend to hear you wrong, ending up dropping you off halfway across the country, rather than your local gym. Most people would probably drop the whole using-my-voice-to-control-my-car thing though, and just use the screen to input their destination. However, if their ventures into AI go as planned, this shouldn’t be a problem.

I guess all I can do now is hope the bad is avoided as much as possible, while maximising on the good.

More by Ajinkya Goyal

Topics of interest

More Related Stories