TECH

Why Is Apple Interested In Cars?

18/02/2014 11:08 GMT | Updated 18/02/2014 11:59 GMT

There are some products we know Apple will release in 2014 - a new iPad, a new iPhone and some laptops.

Then there are those we're hoping for, but aren't sure about. Take the 'iWatch', or the new Apple TV.

And then there's the car.

According to a new report at SF Gate, Apple in increasingly interested in the idea of making some kind of push into the motoring space, either directly or through software or devices.

SF Gate reports that Apple's Adrian Perica met with Tesla CEO Elon Musk last spring, at the same time that analysts said Apple might be prepared to make a bid for the electric car company.

There is no official word on whether that meeting happened - or what was said. But the implication is that Apple is increasingly looking at new product categories to find its next big innovation.

Ideas for potential partnerships include Apple-made touchscreen devices in Tesla vehicles, or some kind of marketing deal.

On the former, these are ideas that we do know Apple is interested in. They've filed several patents on the subject, for instance - though that's not a reliable way to tell if products are forthcoming.

It's also easy to see why Apple would want to explore the idea. For one thing, they're not short of cash - and if an area of tech is even remotely interesting it's worth Apple spending some millions to look into it. But for another, cars are for many people surprisingly near the centre of their tech world. It's where their best sound system is, where they make most of their phone calls, and where they have most need of navigation.

Unfortunately there are no specific details to go on with regard to Apple's plans. Obviously.

But with Google and Microsoft already actively exploring in-car technology, and companies like Ford making their own halting attempts to bring apps into the car, it's certainly an area ripe for new ideas.