Yet another industry boasts: 'We are not afraid' of Apple

From Reuters' "VW chief 'not afraid' of 'Apple Car' entering the market" posted Sunday:

Germany’s Volkswagen is not concerned by any Apple plans for a passenger vehicle that could include the iPhone maker’s battery technology, its chief executive Herbert Diess said...

“The car industry is not a typical tech-sector that you could take over at a single stroke,” Diess was quoted as saying an interview with Frankfurter Allgemeine Sonntagszeitung.

“Apple will not manage that overnight,” he added.

While Apple’s plans are not public, Diess said its intentions as such were “logical” because the company had expertise in batteries, software and design, and that it had deep pockets to build on these competencies.

“Still, we are not afraid,” he said.

My take: Where have we heard this before?

Rinse and repeat for Swiss watchmakers and the Apple Watch.


  1. Alan Blair said:
    Hilarious – makes my day!

    February 15, 2021
  2. Jerry Doyle said:
    “…. My take: Where have we heard this before?”

    Excellent take on the subject blogged, PED. I particularly enjoyed reading the listings that you denoted to support your take.

    My take? Two weeks ago much skepticism existed over whether Apple plans to enter the transportation market with an Apple car. Two weeks later much of that skepticism has been put to rest.

    PS: It’s friggin’ cold outside. Not much gonna go on today.

    February 15, 2021
  3. Gregg Thurman said:
    This is why I don’t concern myself with segment revenue, only the top line. Neither do I take to heart Apple naysayers. Apple has too much success history behind it, when entering/creating new product categories, to be overly concerned about its future in BEVs.

    February 15, 2021
  4. Fred Stein said:
    Great quotes on Phones. Thanks. Ironically Diess is right and wrong at the same time. Apple won’t disrupt overnight.

    Precisely because cars depend on a complex, fragmented supply chain riddled with obsolete technology, Apple can’t fix that “overnight”, but rather “over time”.

    Apple weaned itself of Samsung for chips. Qualcomm and Intel are on the way out. Asia Nikkei recently reported Apple and TSMC working on new display technology. Current car makers can’t ‘think different’.

    February 15, 2021
  5. Chris Ferebee said:
    At least the Swiss watchmakers got a boost, because the Apple Watch brought back the idea of wearing any watches at all.

    The legacy car manufacturers are in a less fortunate position, relatively speaking, with nowhere to go but down.

    February 15, 2021
  6. George Ewonus said:
    I call Hamlet on this one. “(The lady) doth protest too much.” WS, noted playwright and analyst, 16th/17th century.

    February 15, 2021
  7. Let us not overlook the much maligned performance of the iPad, now holding 56% of the tablet market. All those school kids in Japan, Germany and elsewhere about to get a new iPad…”We have also continued our efforts to bring the latest iPads, enriching content and professional support to educators, students and parents. Educational districts and governments worldwide are continuing major deployments, including the largest iPad deployments ever to schools in Germany and Japan.” – T. Cook 1/27/21

    February 15, 2021
  8. Michael Goldfeder said:
    Apple understands its customers better than any company in the history of publicly traded companies. They are the true disruptor when they enter into a market. Not the first, but always the best. Everyone mocked them for the cordless air buds that numerous dunderheads called: “Ear Q-tips.” Not a trend, but a fixture in peoples lives. Same with the watch.

    With all of these car companies on the offensive with press releases, I can’t help but think they were never contacted but have taken on the posture of behaving like a petulant child. Something else is going on here that only Apple knows. Probably along the lines of the M1 chip that’s so far out in front of the rest of the pack that the entire industry has now become unable to match the innovations of Apple in areas they thought were locked up by themselves forever.

    Just look at Mollenkopf over at Qualcomm suddenly retiring. Perhaps he sees the writing on the wall that his company will also be a non player in the years ahead.

    Something more expansive is going on under the surface with Apple and this move into EV/Autonomous cars that nobody is perceiving correctly. You can cut the intrigue with a knife. Another car company chirps up every week saying they are no longer interested. It just seems too farcical at this point.

    February 15, 2021
  9. Greg Bates said:
    We might note a big difference between those comments deriding the iPhone and VW not fearing Apple today. Back then, circa 2007/8, Apple was just a little over a decade or so past it’s near death experience. As the iPhone launched, it was doing well but not a serious challenge to Microsoft at the time, at least in terms of market share or market cap.

    Today, Apple is the largest company on Earth, worth over 20 times VW, by some estimates. Any move into cars will be an effort to bring transportation into its walled garden of software, hardware and services, an ecosystem no car company (including Tesla) has even begun to duplicate.

    The question Diess should be asked is not, are you worried. It’s do you understand the nature of your competition?

    February 15, 2021
  10. Kirk DeBernardi said:
    Oh snap, PED — 😉

    February 16, 2021

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