Citing a source familiar with the matter, Reuters reports that Apple is in talks with charging station companies about their underlying technology. Considering that Apple’s secret electric car project has been making headlines for more than a year now, the move is rather unsurprising.
It’s clear that Apple hasn’t open talks for charging the electric cars of its employees – this is something it is already doing. The sources indicate that Apple is focused on a car, the person added, says Reuters.
It is unclear whether Apple would want its own proprietary technology, such as Tesla Motors’ Supercharger network, or design a system compatible with offerings from other market players.
Several charging station suppliers declined to comment, which isn’t surprising, as Apple usually requires potential partners to sign a non-disclosure agreement. Arun Banskota, president of NRG Energy, however, indirectly backed what Reuters’ source said, saying his company was “in discussions with every manufacturer of today and every potential manufacturer of tomorrow.”
The Reuters report points to Apple’s hires in the area, which seem to back the claims: In January this year, Nan Liu, an engineer who specializes in wireless charging in electric vehicles, joined Apple. Earlier this month, Quartz reported that Google’s charging expert Kurt Adelberger had also been hired by Apple.
According to a report from analyst Neil Cybart, Apple is on track to spend $10 billion on research and development this year, which he sees as a clear indicator of the existence company’s electric car project.