Amid speculation, anonymous tips and cryptic, noncommittal comments from Apple CEO Tim Cook about plans (Project Titan) to eventually enter the automotive business, the company has received what may be its first vehicle-related patent.
Judging by images for U.S. Patent 9,409,599, the tech giant is toying with something of a mashup: an articulated bus or truck riding on tank treads instead wheels. The patent awarded on Aug. 9 is for a “steering device for an articulated vehicle,” and was reported earlier by the blog Patently Apple.
An Apple spokesman didn’t immediately respond to an e-mail seeking additional details.
Needless to say, this is not the vehicle that legions of Apple fans will be trading their Teslas in for, and nothing like the fanciful designs populating Apple-themed sites. What it does show is that after presumably adding hundreds of people — over a thousand according to Tesla CEO Elon Musk — dedicated to a vehicle program and, according to the Wall Street Journal, tapping Apple veteran Bob Mansfield to lead the effort, Apple is starting to crank out unique engineering and development work. – Forbes