wsj.com

The Wall Street Journal is a business-focused newspaper and website that often shares technology-related news, including news on Apple. Information on Apple, such as details on upcoming products or services, is typically accurate and trustworthy having been obtained from reliable sources within Apple.

'wsj.com' Articles

Apple Will Start Paying Ireland Billions Owed in Back Taxes 'Early Next Year'

In August 2016 the European Commission ruled that Apple must repay 13 billion euros ($15.46 billion) in back taxes dating between 2003 and 2014. According to the EU, the taxes were avoided with the help of sweetheart tax deals from Ireland, and today The Wall Street Journal reports that Apple will now begin paying these back taxes "as soon as early next year." Ireland's Finance Minister, Paschal Donohoe, reports that Apple and Ireland have agreed to terms of an escrow fund for the money, setting a pace for Apple to begin repaying the taxes in Q1 2018. Apple's payment will sit in the escrow fund while both sides continue to appeal the EU's decision in court. In October 2017, the EU announced its intention to take Ireland to court for its failure to recover Apple's back tax sum, with Ireland citing the escrow account as the reason why negotiations and repayment were being held up. Now, Donohoe said the next steps will be to determine who operates the escrow account and who manages the fund once Apple begins the repayment process. The EU said that it will only close court proceedings against Ireland once Apple's back taxes are recovered in full. Ireland will begin collecting €13 billion ($15.46 billion) in back taxes from Apple Inc. as soon as early next year after both sides agreed to the terms of an escrow fund for the money, Ireland’s finance chief said Monday. In a statement, Apple said, “We have a dedicated team working diligently and expeditiously with Ireland on the process the European Commission has mandated. We remain confident the General Court of

WSJ Says iPhone X's Production Issues Due to Fewer 'Romeo' Than 'Juliet' Modules

The Wall Street Journal reports that iPhone X production issues were due to a supply imbalance of components dubbed Romeo and Juliet. The report, citing people familiar with the situation, claims it has taken more time to assemble the Romeo module than the Juliet module, both part of the iPhone X's new TrueDepth facial recognition system for Face ID. The so-called Romeo module reportedly includes the dot projector that beams more than 30,000 invisible dots to create a precise depth map of your face, while the Juliet module includes the infrared camera that analyzes the pattern. Earlier this week, both KGI Securities analyst Ming-Chi Kuo and sources speaking with Nikkei Asian Review said the TrueDepth system has indeed been a significant bottleneck for Apple suppliers manufacturing the iPhone X. One of The Wall Street Journal's sources said the assembly process is now moving smoothly, but the production issues add to concerns about extended shortages when iPhone X sales begin in early November. iPhone X pre-orders begin October 27, and the device officially launches November

Apple Has Discussed Investing Up to $1 Billion in SoftBank's Global Technology Fund

Apple has held talks with SoftBank about investing up to $1 billion in the Japanese telecommunication giant's global technology fund, according to The Wall Street Journal. A deal has not been finalized, while the current status of the talks could not be determined, according to the report. President-elect Donald Trump and Softbank CEO Masayoshi Son (Image: LA Times) The so-called "SoftBank Vision Fund," expected to launch next year, will be valued at up to $100 billion, which will be invested into emerging technologies like artificial intelligence and connected internet devices. SoftBank itself will invest at least $25 billion in the fund, while the Saudi Arabian government will pledge up to $45 billion. Apple's own investment would allow it to gain insight on emerging technologies, according to the report.Such a move also would reflect a shift in Apple’s investment strategy, which until recently focused on small stakes in young technology companies. Earlier this year, Apple invested $1 billion in Didi Chuxing Technology Co., China’s homegrown ride-sharing competitor to Uber Technologies Inc. SoftBank is also an investor in Didi.Last week, SoftBank CEO Masayoshi Son said he would invest $50 billion of the fund in the United States and create 50,000 new jobs in the country following a meeting with President-elect Donald Trump. SoftBank is the parent company of U.S. carrier Sprint, which employs about 30,000 people. Note: Due to the political nature of the discussion regarding this topic, the discussion thread is located in our Politics, Religion, Social Issues

AirPods Delay Attributed to Apple Ensuring Both Earpieces Receive Audio at Same Time [Updated]

AirPods were originally slated to launch in October, but the wireless earphones were later delayed. Apple said it needed "a little more time" before they are ready for customers, and it has yet to provide an official update since. While the exact reason for the delay remains unclear, a person familiar with the development of AirPods told The Wall Street Journal that Apple's troubles appear to be related to its "efforts to chart a new path for wireless headphones," in addition to resolving what happens when users lose one of the earpieces or the battery dies.A person familiar with the development of the AirPod said the trouble appears to stem from Apple’s effort to chart a new path for wireless headphones. In most other wireless headphones, only one earpiece receives a signal from the phone via wireless Bluetooth technology; it then transmits the signal to the other earpiece. Apple has said AirPod earpieces each receive independent signals from an iPhone, Mac or other Apple device. But Apple must ensure that both earpieces receive audio at the same time to avoid distortion, the person familiar with their development said. That person said Apple also must resolve what happens when a user loses one of the earpieces or the battery dies.Last month, Barclays analysts said AirPods should enter production in December. Their research note said quantities would be limited to between 10 and 15 million AirPods to start. Meanwhile, an alleged email response from Apple CEO Tim Cook said AirPods should begin shipping over the "next few weeks." With just two weeks remaining in

iPhone 7 to Start at 32GB of Storage, Replacing 16GB Base Model

In a wide-ranging commentary piece about why now is a bad time to buy a new iPhone, The Wall Street Journal has confirmed that the iPhone 7 will start with 32GB of storage, replacing the infamous 16GB base tier offered since the iPhone 3GS.The new iPhones are expected to have more storage for those photos. Instead of 16GB as a starting point for the entry-level iPhone, the new starting point will be 32GB, according to a person familiar with Apple’s iPhone plans. Hallelujah! I’ve long said that keeping the 16GB iPhone was just a ploy for Apple to get people to buy the 64GB model—for $100 extra.The bump from 16GB to 32GB of entry-level storage has already been widely rumored by multiple Asian sources connected with Apple's supply chain, but confirmation from The Wall Street Journal makes the claim much more credible. Two of the three storage options for iPhone 7 will likely be 32GB and 128GB, while multiple sources have said that at least the larger Plus-sized 5.5-inch model will be available with 256GB of storage. It is unclear if the 4.7-inch model will also have a 256GB storage option. The current storage options for both the iPhone 6s and iPhone 6s Plus include 16GB, 64GB, and 128GB. The Wall Street Journal previously confirmed that the iPhone 7 will have a thinner iPhone 6s-like design with no headphone jack and improved waterproofing. Other rumored features include a faster Apple A10 processor, repositioned antenna bands, faster LTE and Wi-Fi, and camera improvements, possibly including a dual-lens camera (and 3GB of RAM) exclusive to the 5.5-inch

Apple's 2016 iPhone Update to Focus on Headphone Jack Removal, Major Changes Won't Come Until 2017

Rumors have suggested the 2016 iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus will not feature major design changes aside from the removal of the headphone jack, information that has been confirmed in a new report from The Wall Street Journal. The iPhone 7 and the iPhone 7 Plus will continue to feature 4.7 and 5.5-inch displays, with only "subtle changes" to the exterior of the devices. Past rumors indicate the two devices will be the same general size as the iPhone 6s and iPhone 6s Plus, but with relocated antenna bands that no longer span across the back of the bodies. According to The Wall Street Journal, the removal of the headphone jack will make the iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus thinner while also improving its water resistance. Just how thin is a matter of contention in rumors -- schematics show little reduction in thickness but KGI Securities analyst Ming-Chi Kuo has said the iPhone 7 could be 1mm thinner than the current iPhone 6s. Mockup of what the iPhone 7 will look like While 2016 will mark a minor update, 2017 will bring major changes to the iPhone in celebration of the device's 10th anniversary. Citing sources "familiar with the matter," The Wall Street Journal suggests features could include an edge-to-edge OLED display with built-in Touch ID fingerprint support to allow Apple to eliminate the home button. Apple is said to be deviating from its standard tick-tock upgrade cycle in order to introduce major new features in the 2017 iPhone, which take time to develop. At a meeting with an Apple executive last month, one of the company's China-based engineers asked why

Apple Working on Mobile Person-to-Person Payment Service

Apple is in talks with U.S. banks over a potential person-to-person mobile payments service, reports The Wall Street Journal. Such a service would perhaps be positioned as an expansion to Apple Pay, and it would allow people to send each other payments, much like PayPal's Venmo or Square's Square Cash service. Little is known about the talks at this early date, but The Wall Street Journal says communication between Apple and the banks is ongoing and it's not known if Apple has inked any concrete deals. Apple is said to be speaking to Chase, Capital One, Wells Fargo, and U.S. Bank, but key details "remain in flux" and the technical details still need to be worked out. It isn't clear how Apple intends to make money from the service. Indeed, the company may view a person-to-person offering mostly as a way to get more consumers to convert to its phones. Under the current discussions, Apple wouldn’t charge the banks for participating in its person-to-person payment service, said the person familiar with the talks. That is different from Apple Pay in which the banks pay Apple for each transactionPerson-to-person services like Venmo and Square Cash are used for personal payments and are useful for things like paying back a friend who bought dinner or splitting a rent payment. With Apple's system, iPhone and iPad owners could perhaps use Apple Pay to send secure payments to one another from a checking account. A launch date for the service is unclear as of yet, but Apple may be targeting a 2016

Apple Car Development Speeds Up, 2019 Launch Date Targeted

Apple is speeding up development on its electric car project, reports The Wall Street Journal, giving it a "committed project" label and targeting 2019 as a prospective shipping date. To facilitate a faster launch, Apple will be greatly expanding the number of people working on the car.The go-ahead came after the company spent more than a year investigating the feasibility of an Apple-branded car, including meetings with two groups of government officials in California. Leaders of the project, code-named Titan , have been given permission to triple the 600-person team, the people familiar with the matter said.Apple has already been aggressively hiring for its car project, poaching employees from companies like Ford, General Motors, Tesla, Volkswagen, and more. Many of its recent hires have expertise in connected and autonomous vehicle systems. The BMW i3, which Apple reportedly considered using as a base for the Apple Car Though there have been indications suggesting Apple is exploring autonomous vehicles as part of its car project, The Wall Street Journal's sources say the first car Apple releases will not be driverless, with that functionality perhaps coming at a later date. There have been also other signs pointing towards expanded work on the car project. In May, Apple began looking into secure facilities in the Bay Area where a prototype could be tested, reportedly meeting up with officials at GoMentum Station, a secure test facility for connected and autonomous vehicles. Apple also met with DMV officials in August to discuss California's autonomous vehicle

Jony Ive Says Apple Watch Hermès Doesn't Make Apple 'Exclusive'

Apple design chief Jony Ive and Hermès artistic director Pierre-Alexis Dumas recently spoke with The Wall Street Journal about how the Apple Watch Hermès came to be. Interestingly, the two companies began collaborating on the premium Apple Watch last year, several months before the wrist-worn device was released.“It’s something highly unusual for Apple to do—to talk about an unannounced project,” said Mr. Ive, 48 years old. They decided to partner over lunch in Paris, where Hermès is based, last October.Jony Ive believes that, while the Apple Watch Hermès was the most expensive product introduced at Apple's media event earlier this week, the premium watch does not make Apple an "exclusive" company. He later compared the Apple Watch Hermès to the Apple Watch Sport, stating that the same amount of time and effort went into designing both models.“We don’t think in those terms,” Mr. Ive said in an interview Wednesday, after the Apple Watch Hermès was unveiled. “I’m not comfortable with words like exclusive.” […] “Look at this next to one of the sport collection,” he says, referring to the $349 rubber-bracelet version that accounts for the majority of watch sales to date, according to people familiar with the matter. “There’s not one that had more care invested in its designing or making.”Nevertheless, Apple's partnership with luxury goods maker Hermès is further evidence the Apple Watch is being positioned to both the high-end technology and fashion industries. The returns could be lucrative, with the Apple Watch Hermès lineup ranging in price from $1,100 to $1,500.

Apple Working With More Than 40 Tech Companies to Make iPad a Better Work Tool

Apple is working with more than 40 technology companies to make the iPad a better work tool, according to a new report by The Wall Street Journal. The initiative, which is called the Mobility Partner Program (MPP), is an effort to change the way business is done and boost lagging iPad sales. The initiative is a bet that Apple, which has never been a big player in the $2 trillion annual spending on workplace technology, can grab a bigger slice of the market by reshaping the nature of work in mobile-friendly settings—where Apple has an edge.Apple's partners in the program include smaller companies like accounting firm Xero, digital cash register company Revel Systems, and field-service software firm ServiceMax. Some partners, like Xero, have been invited to train Apple business specialists while other undisclosed partners were invited to an Apple sales conference in March, an event that is typically closed to company outsiders. Within the program, Apple reviews its partners' apps and makes suggestions on their work. Apple has also suggested that companies who make complementary apps work together to make their apps compatible, ensuring a richer experience for users. In fact, the partnership has also worked in the reverse, with the Cupertino company's partners getting Apple in touch with business customers in a way it hasn't before. However, the program is still shrouded in secrecy. It's unclear which companies are participating in the program, and some of Apple's partners don't even know the other participating companies or what their role is in selling apps. Apple

Samsung May Announce Galaxy Note 5 in August to Beat iPhone Launch

Samsung is planning to move up the launch of the Galaxy Note 5 by one month to avoid competing with Apple's annual iPhone event in September, according to The Wall Street Journal. The South Korean handset maker will reportedly unveil the next Galaxy Note in mid-August instead of announcing the smartphone at the IFA Berlin trade show in early September as it has done for four consecutive years. Apple introduced the iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus just six days after the Galaxy Note 4 was announced on September 3 last year, shifting much of the media coverage and consumer attention away from Samsung. With the launch of the so-called "iPhone 6s" and "iPhone 6s Plus" also likely to be in September, Samsung is reportedly looking to avoid the same fate with the Galaxy Note

Apple to Order Record-Breaking 85-90 Million Force Touch-Equipped 'iPhone 6s' Models

Apple is asking suppliers to assemble a record-breaking 85 to 90 million units of its next-generation iPhone models combined by year-end, according to The Wall Street Journal. That order tops the reported 70 to 80 million iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus units that Apple ordered during its initial production run last year. The report reiterates rumors that the so-called "iPhone 6s" and "iPhone 6s Plus" will feature both Force Touch, which can distinguish between a light tap and deep press, and a new color option, likely rose gold or pink. Foxconn and Pegatron are expected to be the main suppliers of the next-generation iPhones, while Apple may elect to use a third assembler Wistron to help fulfill the record-breaking number of orders. The next-generation iPhones will reportedly enter mass-production starting next month and are expected to retain the same 4.7-inch and 5.5-inch screen sizes and current display resolutions. The "iPhone 6s" and "iPhone 6s Plus" are widely expected to be announced in September with a focus on non-cosmetic improvements such as an A9 processor with 2GB of RAM, Force Touch, faster Qualcomm LTE chip and improved 12-megapixel rear-facing camera.

Apple Nixed Plans for Apple-Branded Television Set 'More Than a Year Ago'

Apple shelved plans to introduce a full-blown television set more than a year ago reports The Wall Street Journal, citing sources with knowledge of Apple's plans. The company reportedly spent more than a decade researching the possibility of releasing an ultra high-definition television set before deciding to nix the project because it couldn't find untapped features that would give it an edge in the television market. Apple had searched for breakthrough features to justify building an Apple-branded television set, those people said. In addition to an ultra-high-definition display, Apple considered adding sensor-equipped cameras so viewers could make video calls through the set, they said. Ultimately, though, Apple executives didn't consider any of those features compelling enough to enter the highly competitive television market, led by Samsung Electronics Co.One of the technologies Apple investigated in the mid-2000s was a transparent display that used lasers to display an image, but it used too much power and resulted in poor image quality. Another potential feature Apple explored was video calling similar to FaceTime, but it ultimately "didn't seem compelling enough" for Apple to enter the television market. The Wall Street Journal's report comes following comments from investor Carl Icahn, who today shared a letter covering on products he believes Apple will introduce over the course of the next several years. Icahn suggested Apple will dominate both the television and automobile markets, introducing 55 and 65-inch television sets in 2016 and a car in 2020.

Apple Watch in Short Supply Due to Taptic Engine Bottlenecks

The Apple Watch has been available in extremely limited quantities since pre-orders for the device launched on April 10, and a new report from The Wall Street Journal sheds some light on why supplies have been low. A key component of the Apple Watch, the Taptic Engine, was made by two separate suppliers, and the devices created by one of Apple's suppliers were "found to be defective."After mass production began in February, reliability testing revealed that some taptic engines supplied by AAC Technologies Holdings Inc., of Shenzhen, China, started to break down over time, the people familiar with the matter said. One of those people said Apple scrapped some completed watches as a result.Apple was unable to use the Taptic Engines from the supplier in Shenzhen, China, but those produced by a second supplier in Japan did not have the same issue. The majority of Taptic Engine production is now being done in Japan, but it will take some time for the factory to increase production, and with a single supplier, quantities of the taptic engine available for use in Apple Watch devices likely remains low. The Taptic Engine is a linear actuator, creating motion in a straight line by moving a small rod. It powers the haptic feedback capabilities of the Apple Watch, delivering the small taps that are felt on the wrist with notifications, pings from friends, heartbeats, and more. The Taptic Engine is a major part of the Apple Watch, working in conjunction with audio cues to deliver subtle alerts and notifications to Apple Watch wearers. To resolve some of the supply constraints

Apple to Add Force Touch and Pink Color Option to Next iPhones, Screen Size to Stay the Same

Apple will add pressure-sensing Force Touch technology to its next-generation iPhones, reports The Wall Street Journal in an article that covers a range of new details on the iPhone 6s and iPhone 6s Plus. Currently built into the upcoming Apple Watch and 12-inch Retina MacBook, Force Touch lets devices distinguish between a light tap and a hard press, enabling new gestures. According to the report, which is sourced from Apple suppliers, Apple's next-generation iPhones will continue to be available in 4.7 and 5.5-inch screen sizes, with plans to "keep the resolution similar." New colors are a possibility though, and Apple is said to be considering adding a pink option to its existing space gray, silver, and gold iPhone lineup. Production may begin on components for the next-generation iPhones as early as May, but The Wall Street Journal notes that Apple often tests technologies and designs with various suppliers that may not make it into finalized products. Today's report echoes several other reports that have also pointed towards Force Touch for the next-generation iPhone. Supply chain sources first hinted at Force Touch technology back in January, and those rumors seem more plausible now that the feature has been incorporated into both the Apple Watch and Apple's recently announced MacBook. Beyond the Force Touch rumors, little is known about the next-generation iPhones, which will likely be called the "iPhone 6s" and the "iPhone 6s Plus." The devices are expected to receive upgraded A9 processors and have been rumored to include features like camera

June WWDC Launch Looking More Likely for 12-Inch Retina MacBook Air

Despite rumors earlier this week suggesting the 12-inch Retina MacBook Air could see a launch during Apple's upcoming March 9 media event, The Wall Street Journal tonight released a report indicating the notebook won't be shipping until Q2 2015. The site shared the tidbit in a detailed report on upcoming features that might be added to the larger-screened 12.9-inch "iPad Pro."While suppliers are gearing up to ship the new 12-inch MacBook Air in large quantities in the second quarter, Apple's launch schedule remains unclear, the people said.A Q2 2015 shipment date for the 12-inch MacBook Air suggests Apple could be planning to launch the notebook around June, possibly at its Worldwide Developers Conference. Apple has launched products during WWDC before, introducing the Mac Pro in 2013 and the Retina MacBook Pro in 2012. Rendering of the 12-inch MacBook Air next to an existing MacBook Air by Martin Hajek Aside from a potential launch date for the notebook, there's one other significant point of interest in The Wall Street Journal's report -- a clear distinction between the 12-inch MacBook Air and the 12.9-inch iPad Pro. Some users have speculated that due to the similarity in screen size and the iPad-like features rumored for the 12-inch Retina MacBook Air, the two products are actually one, but this new report makes it very clear that Apple is developing two separate product lines.Separately, Apple also plans to broaden its product offering with a new 12-inch MacBook Air, people familiar with the matter said. Earlier this year, Apple's suppliers started mass

Apple May Include USB 3.0 Ports on Upcoming 12.9-Inch 'iPad Pro'

Following up on a report from earlier today claiming Apple has pushed back its plans for the so-called "iPad Pro", asking suppliers to begin production in September rather than this quarter, The Wall Street Journal weighs in with its own claim that Apple is indeed now targeting the second half of this year for the mass production of the device. Mockup of iPad Pro, iPad Air, and iPad mini Beyond timing, the report also claims Apple is still tweaking plans for the iPad Pro's design and feature set, with the company considering including USB 3.0 ports to accommodate data transfer and peripherals connectivity.“Apple has continued to rework some of the features of the larger iPad. It is now considering the faster technology for data synchronization between the larger iPad and other computing devices,” said the person. [..] The company has also been considering adding ports to connect to a keyboard and mouse, the people said.Apple is reportedly also looking into ways to speed up charging time for the iPad Pro, as the device will almost certainly come with an even higher-capacity battery than the iPad Air family. Finally, The Wall Street Journal's sources indicate the iPad Pro's display does indeed measure 12.9 inches diagonally, marking a substantial increase over the iPad Air family's 9.7-inch display. Rumors have been split between 12.9 inches and 12.2 inches for the iPad Pro's

Japan Display Looks to Partner With Apple on New $1.7 Billion iPhone Display Plant

Foreign display manufacturer Japan Display Inc. (JDI) is seeking to be Apple's next go-to source for iPhone screens in the future, according to someone "familiar with the matter" (via The Wall Street Journal). With the increase in profit overseas, especially following Apple's attempt at a bigger presence in places like China over the past few months, the source reported that JDI is hoping Apple takes much of the cost for the proposed plant's investment. As pointed out by Reuters, JDI is aiming for the plant to be operable by next year, and hopes Apple itself would pay much of the predicted 200 billion yen ($1.7 billion) cost of the project. “We are reviewing various considerations to strengthen our business competitiveness, including new factories, but we haven’t made any decision yet,” Japan Display said in a statement Friday. Apple declined to comment. The unnamed source continued to describe the plant's possible location, stating that Ishikawa, in central Japan, is "most likely" the site for the manufacturing plant. JDI runs a plant southeast of Tokyo, in Mobara, "which makes 50,000 of the 1.5 by 1.85 metre sheets a month for iPhone 6 screens and other uses." According to the source, the new plant would have a "greater capacity" than even JDI's Mobara facility. JDI, formed from the troubled display portions of Sony Corp, Toshiba Corp, and Hitachi Ltd, has already seen a resurgence of profit after two consecutive quarter losses thanks to increasing demand from Apple-related devices. Now it wants a bigger contract with the Cupertino-based company - and its record-

Original Apple Watch Health Features Were Dropped Due to Consistency Issues

Before Apple unveiled the Apple Watch last September, reports indicated the device would come with 10 sensors to track health and fitness data, leading some healthcare professionals to find the unveiled Apple Watch's health features disappointing. In a new report, The Wall Street Journal offers a look at the original Apple Watch health features that were dropped due to consistency problems. Apple began developing the watch about four years ago, with a focus on health and fitness. It’s not unusual for Apple to experiment with many technologies or shift focus during product development, but the watch was especially challenging, people familiar with the matter said. Internally, the project became known as a “black hole” sucking in resources, one of these people said.The Apple Watch originally featured sensors that measured the conductivity of skin, allowing the device to detect stress levels and heart-rate monitoring similar to an electrocardiogram, also known as an EKG. Apple also experimented with ways to detect blood pressure or how much oxygen is in a user's blood. However, a mix of consistency problems and potential oversight caused Apple to switch the focus of the device from health-related to a more general do-everything product. The skin conductivity features didn't perform well with people who had hairy arms or dry skin, while results varied depending on how tight an Apple Watch was worn on users' wrists. Additionally, if Apple decided to use the health data to provide "health or behavioral advice", the Cupertino company would have to seek approval from the

Hundreds of Apple Employees Working On Apple-Branded Electric Vehicle

Following up on today's report suggesting that Apple is recruiting automotive technology and vehicle design experts to work in a secret research lab, The Wall Street Journal is reporting that Apple is developing an electric vehicle. According to the publication's sources, Apple has hundreds of employees working to design an Apple-branded minivan-like electric vehicle under the code name Project Titan. The large size of the team indicates that the company is serious about the project, but it's possible that Apple may not go through with plans to create a car despite its current research efforts. One of the mysterious Apple-leased vehicles seen on Bay Area streets, courtesy of a MacRumors Reader Apple may decide not to proceed with a car. In addition, many technologies used in an electric car, such as advanced batteries and in-car electronics, would be useful to other Apple products, including the iPhone and iPad. Apple often investigates technologies and potential products, going as far as building multiple prototypes for some things that it won't ever sell. Any product would take several years to complete and obtain safety certifications.Apple executives have reportedly flown to Austria to meet with contract manufacturers of high-end cars, like Magna Steyr, who would presumably work with Apple on creating the cars if the project proceeds. The car project, which is not focused on self-driving vehicles, is said to have been approved by Apple CEO Tim Cook in 2014. Steve Zadesky, Apple VP of Product Design and former Ford engineer, is said to be leading Apple's car