Apple is reportedly working with Chinese battery manufacturer Contemporary Amperex Technology on automotive battery research and development, reads a new report from MacRumors.
According to the report, Apple is working with the manufacturer, based in China’s Fujian province, one some sort of project protected by some sort of confidentiality agreement. According to the report’s source, the two companies are working together on battery research and development.
Contemporary Amperex Technology was split from parent company Amperex Technology, Apple’s largest battery supplier, and became an independent manufacturer of batteries in 2011. It is widely thought that the two companies are working together on some sort of automotive battery research and development.
“We’re focusing on autonomous systems,” Apple Chief Executive Tim Cook told Bloomberg last month. “It’s a core technology that we view as very important.” He called the group’s effort “the mother of all AI projects,” but did not give product-level details about the company’s automotive endeavors.
Neither company has officially confirmed their collaboration, nor has either released any statement regarding the matter.
“If Apple is working with [Contemporary Amperex Technology] on a battery,” says CCID Consulting’s New Energy Director Wu Hui, “the possibility that Apple will continue to make cars cannot be ruled out as one of the core components of self-driving electric cars is the battery.”
The scale of Apple’s involvement with CAT remains unknown, but the company has reportedly been testing self-driving vehicle software using a fleet of Lexus SUVs, which have recently been seen on streets in California.