One of the biggest disappointments in the automotive industry is in charging electric cars. A new report states that Apple is getting involved and it might just become even more of a shitshow.
The modern resurgence of electric cars and electric car companies has seen new EVs come and go since the mid ‘90s. What it hasn’t seen is any unified standard on how these cars get their electricity.
There is still no one single charger for all electric vehicles, though there are standards that hope to be the only one anyone uses. Tesla, most notably, has its own distinct charging network, let alone charger. You become particularly aware of this when you try to charge a Tesla in Detroit, where there are plenty of charging stations that work with Chevy Volts, and you in your Tesla have to fumble around for an adapter.
Now Apple is “investigating how to charge electric cars, talking to charging station companies and hiring engineers with expertise in the area,” according to a new report released today from Reuters. This includes talks with charging station companies, and hiring engineers who have worked on charging EVs at other companies, including BMW. Here’s Reuters’ description of their sourcing for the report:
Apple, which has never publicly acknowledged a car project, declined to comment for this story. Neither the LinkedIn profiles nor sources said specifically that Apple was building charging stations for electric cars.
But automotive sources last year told Reuters that Apple was studying a self-driving electric vehicle (EV), as the Silicon Valley icon looks for new sources of revenue amid a maturing market for its iPhone.
Apple is now asking charging station companies about their underlying technology, one person with knowledge of the matter said. The talks, which have not been reported, do not concern charging for electric cars of Apple employees, a service the company already provides. They indicate that Apple is focused on a car, the person added.
There’s lots of money to be made in getting charging right, and Apple certainly has experience streamlining the process when it comes to charging phones and computers. If they can somehow unify electric car charging under one system, that would be great. If they end up being yet another player competing for dominance, we will have to wait more years before charging an EV will be as simple as filling up an ordinary car.