OK so Steve Jobs is making an iCar. Course he is … inevitable really.
Well, not quite. It was announced from Berlin that Apple and Volkswagen are discussing the possibility of building an “iCar” which would feature products from Apple. Apple CEO Steve Jobs and Volkswagen’s chief Martin Winterkorn apparently met in California. They evidently came up with “scores of ideas,” but few concrete plans. Riiight.
So its not quite a Virgin-esque brand extension (I wonder what Nissan would have thought if it were!). Its more like glomming on a few Apple bits and pieces to a Volkswagen. That said I was impressed with the Apple+Nike hookup (although some thought it heralded brand dilution) and will withhold judgment until I know more about the i-Car.
German financial magazine CapitaMarket opines that a compact car upgraded with Apple products would be of most “substantial interest to young target groups”. Apple actually already works with VW and BMW to offer an integrated in-car hookup for iPods. Electronics and other necessities like endless cup holders, are increasingly a selling point for carmakers.
In a somehow less cool-sounding move, Microsoft are also integrating their Sync system in to Fords. This I.C.E. system will cost $395 as an option. Sync allows drivers, using either voice recognition or steering wheel controls, to listen to their digital music players and have text messages on their cellphones read aloud.
Anyways personally I am still waiting for one of these …