According to Volkmar Denner, the chief executive officer of Robert Bosch, the largest auto supplier in the world, the recent plans of software makers Google and probably also Apple have prompted swift reactions from the traditional players in the auto industry.
The carmakers and their long-time supply partners have stepped up efforts to introduce their own versions of highly automated vehicles after the emergence of prototype vehicles designed by Internet search giant Google proved the potential disruptions the tech industry can bring, lifting the peril even further if Apple decides to bring its own electric car into the game. “Google is pushing the theme of self-driving cars very strongly. That’s having a very positive effect for the entire automotive industry, because it enormously accelerates the pace of introducing drive-assist systems and semi-automatic functions,” commented Denner during a conference in Berlin.
Apple, after numerous reports emerged over the weekend that it had a skunkworks project team working on an electric car since late last year, declined to comment on the possibility it would also evolve into a fully fledged carmaker, but the speculation alone is enough to cause reactions from the established industry, believe both analysts and auto executives. The approaching emergence of a powerful new auto industry player could also intensify the already ongoing war for talent between the auto industry and Silicon Valley technology companies, with established suppliers such as Bosch or carmakers such as BMW and GM having trouble retaining talent.
Via Automotive News Europe