Tim Cook on Revealing Apple's Car Plans: 'Yeah, I'm Probably Not Going to Do That'

time-cook-time-100-2015-iconsApple CEO Tim Cook discussed a range of topics in an interview with Fortune posted online today. Although Cook skirted the topic of the Apple Car, eventually Fortune brought up the recent hiring of automobile industry people by Apple, and asked Cook to put the rumors to rest once and for all.

Yeah, I’m probably not going to do that. The great thing about being here is we’re curious people. We explore technologies, and we explore products.

And we’re always thinking about ways that Apple can make great products that people love, that help them in some way. And we don’t go into very many categories, as you know. We edit very much. We talk about a lot of things and do fewer. We debate many things and do a lot fewer.

According to Cook, the addition of people from the automotive industry isn't a confirmation of the Apple Car, but simply a way for Apple to "explore things with teams of people." Once an idea gets past that stage, and the company begins "spending large amounts of money," that's when Cook and the team are "committed" to seeing the project through to the end. Although he doesn't directly confirm it, the suggestion hints that Apple's potential smart car is in the exploratory phase.

Part of exploring technologies and picking the right one is becoming so familiar with it you can see ways that it can be used. And for us, we’ve never been about being first. We’ve been about being best. So we explore many different things, many different technologies. And at first we might not know what product it might wind up in. And then later we’ll see that that really cool technology enables maybe things that we’re doing today to take on something bigger, maybe something new. But once we start spending gobs of money—like when we start spending on tooling and things like that—we’re committed.

Cook also touched on the topic of Apple occupying an era of "peak iPhone," thanks to a Q1 2016 fiscal quarter that saw iPhone sales remain largely "flat" from the same time last year (74.8 million iPhones in 2016 compared to 74.5 million in 2015). Cook said that he and Apple attempt to ignore such chatter and focus on the tenets of customer satisfaction and product quality, believing that "over time," he's sure "that everything else will catch up."

The Apple CEO ended with hinting that the company's newest headquarters will open in "early 2017," although a specific date has yet to be set. The name of the new campus is still up in the air as well, but Cook said that it will in some way pay homage to Steve Jobs and that Apple is "working with Laurene [Powell Jobs, Steve’s widow] and the family" on specifically deciding which direction to take with honoring the late CEO.

Check out Fortune's full Q&A with Tim Cook here.

Related Roundup: Apple Car

Top Rated Comments

gugy Avatar
67 months ago
Tim, please focus on MacOS and iOS. Software and hardware. Be careful spreading Apple all over the place.
Score: 14 Votes (Like | Disagree)
dannyyankou Avatar
67 months ago
Tim, please focus on MacOS and iOS. Software and hardware. Be careful spreading Apple all over the place.
Well yeah, it would be silly for their iPhone and Mac engineers working on a car. That's why they bring in car experts to explore it. It's not like they can only focus on a couple things at a time.
Score: 11 Votes (Like | Disagree)
jamietomo78 Avatar
67 months ago
I think he's still salty because of the FBI :p
He's worried the FBI might want to put a back door onto it. :D
Score: 7 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Tycho24 Avatar
67 months ago
Tim, please focus on MacOS and iOS. Software and hardware. Be careful spreading Apple all over the place.
Jesus Christ... haven't you lot got the memo that Apple is NOT two people working out of a garage anymore??!

Here's your same comment, rooted this time in REALITY:
"Tim, please take the hundreds of people you've newly hired with automotive experience & let them take the reins on squashing software bugs."
Sounds pretty silly, right??
Score: 5 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Nightarchaon Avatar
67 months ago
Hard to get people to buy a new car every two years that needs a specially shaped fuel pump to fill it up.
Score: 4 Votes (Like | Disagree)
zahuh Avatar
67 months ago
I'm sick of Cook saying "We don't want to be first, we want to be best." I LOVED the 17" MBP. I loved the risk and attempt to make something great that nobody else made. I loved the backlit keyboard that nobody had. I could use dozens of more examples in the SJ days. Tim, it's okay to risk and go for something nobody has done and be the best at the same time.
Score: 4 Votes (Like | Disagree)

Top Stories

apple event spring loaded

Apple's 'Spring Loaded' Event Officially Announced for Tuesday, April 20

Tuesday April 13, 2021 9:04 am PDT by
Following an overnight leak by Siri, Apple today officially announced that it will be holding a special "Spring Loaded" event on Tuesday, April 20 at 10:00 a.m. Pacific Time at the Steve Jobs Theater on the Apple Park campus in Cupertino, California. As with all of Apple's 2020 events, the April 2021 event will be a digital-only gathering with no members of the media invited to attend in...
iphone12cameras

Kuo: 2022 iPhones to Feature 48-Megapixel Camera, 8K Video, and 6.1 and 6.7" Sizes With No 5.4" Mini Option

Tuesday April 13, 2021 10:45 pm PDT by
The upcoming 2022 iPhone lineup will feature two 6.1-inch devices and two 6.7-inch devices, with no mini-sized 5.4-inch iPhone, well-respected Apple analyst Ming-Chi Kuo said in a note to investors that was seen by MacRumors. Two of the iPhones will be high-end models and two of the iPhones will be lower-end models, similar to the current iPhone 12 lineup. Apple introduced the 5.4-inch...
macos catalina serial number

Apple Preparing Rollout of New Randomized Product Serial Numbers Ahead of 'Spring Loaded' Event

Wednesday April 14, 2021 2:08 am PDT by
Apple is advising its authorized premium resellers and dealers to prepare for new products with 10 and 12 digital serial numbers, days ahead of when it's expected to reveal a slew of new products. MacRumors previously reported that Apple plans to switch to randomized serial numbers for future products starting in early 2021. The company now seems to be preparing for that roll-out, telling...
apple event particularly innovative article

Gurman: Apple's 'Spring Loaded' Event Won't Feature Anything 'Particularly Innovative'

Thursday April 15, 2021 1:30 am PDT by
Bloomberg's highly-respected Mark Gurman says that he expects nothing "particularly innovative" or "extraordinary" to launch at Apple's "Spring Loaded" event next week, Tuesday, April 20. Gurman made the remarks during an interview for Bloomberg Technology, in which he reaffirmed that Apple will launch a new 11-inch and 12.9-inch iPad Pro, with the higher-end model featuring a brand new...
duanrui iphone13 notch samples

More Leaked iPhone 13 Samples Show Smaller Notch, Repositioned Earpiece and Front Camera

Wednesday April 14, 2021 1:06 am PDT by
Leaker known as "DuanRui" has today shared an image of two iPhone 13 "film samples," which show the same rumored smaller notch design coming to the iPhone 13 series that we've seen from other sources. In past tweets, DuanRui has accurately leaked the correct names of the iPhone 12 models and an iPad Air 4 manual revealing its new design, so there's good reason to think this leak is credible, ...
siir apple event april 20

Siri Reveals Apple Event Planned for Tuesday, April 20

Tuesday April 13, 2021 12:04 am PDT by
Siri has apparently prematurely revealed that Apple plans to hold an event on Tuesday, April 20, where the company is expected to reveal brand new iPad Pro models and possibly its long-awaited AirTags trackers. Subscribe to the MacRumors YouTube channel for more videos. Upon being asked "When is the next Apple Event," Siri is currently responding with, "The special event is on Tuesday, April...
apple event hashflag

Twitter Hashflag for April 20 Apple Event Goes Live

Tuesday April 13, 2021 2:21 pm PDT by
Following the overnight Siri leak and subsequent announcement that Apple will hold a media event on Tuesday, April 20, a new Twitter hashflag has appeared to help provide visibility for the event on the platform. For the last several recent events, Apple has utilized hashflags, which are little icons next to hashtags on Twitter, as a way to market its events. The company first started the...
parallels windows 10 arm mac

Parallels 16.5 Can Virtualize ARM Windows Natively on M1 Macs With Up to 30% Faster Performance

Wednesday April 14, 2021 7:00 am PDT by
Parallels today announced the release of Parallels Desktop 16.5 for Mac with full support for M1 Macs, allowing for the Windows 10 ARM Insider Preview and ARM-based Linux distributions to be run in a virtual machine at native speeds on M1 Macs. Parallels says running a Windows 10 ARM Insider Preview virtual machine natively on an M1 Mac results in up to 30 percent better performance compared ...
iphone 13 pro render rear

iPhone 13 Pro Rumored to Be Thicker and Feature Larger Rear Camera System

Wednesday April 14, 2021 7:07 am PDT by
Tech blog 91Mobiles has obtained 3D renders of what it claims will be the iPhone 13 Pro, revealing a largely familiar design with a few notable changes, including a smaller notch and a significantly larger rear camera system. Following renders of the standard iPhone 13 model from MySmartPrice yesterday, which showed a new diagonal rear camera layout, these renders of the 6.1-inch iPhone 13...
third gen Apple pencil leaked video

Video of Alleged Third-Generation Apple Pencil Leaks Ahead of Apple Event

Friday April 16, 2021 6:13 am PDT by
A video purporting to be of the third-generation Apple Pencil has today been shared online, showing a glossy finish that mirrors previous leaks. New ✏️ ready to 🚢 #AppleEvent @TommyBo50387266 pic.twitter.com/s4RCDwDi5M— 漢尼斯·拉斯納 🇨🇳 (@ileakeer) April 16, 2021 The brief video from Twitter account @ileakeer, spotted by 9to5Mac, shows an Apple Pencil with a glossy finish much like the...