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Beyond iPhone 6 - Apple looking to electric cars with Tesla buy

David Ludlow
18 Feb 2014
Tesla
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Apple is reportedly turning to Tesla to continue growth

Apple has had a huge period of growth thanks to its iPhones and iPads. While the world gets excited about the iPhone 6, Apple is already planning how it will continue to expand and, rumour has it, it's looking beyond computers and smartphones.

According to the San Francisco Chronicle, Apple is thinking bigger and is even looking at electric cars.

An anonymous source told the Chronicle that Adrian Perica, the mergers and acquisitions chief at Apple, met with Elon Musk, Tesla's CEO, in Cupertino last year. Neither Tesla nor Apple have publically commented on the meeting, but speculation is rife that Apple intends to buy Tesla to make a move into electric cars.

It might not seem like an obvious choice for the company, but that's why some analysts are urging Apple to do it. While smartphone and tablet growth has been outstanding, there are fears that the market is maturing and growth will begin to slow down. Diversifying the company and moving into a different market would give Apple the potential to keep on growing.

It's not as though Apple needs to worry about funding the venture either. As of September 2013, according to Forbes, Apple has a staggering $156bn in cash.

It's this money that could make the deal enticing for the electric car manufacturer. While Tesla has seen growth, particularly with its Model S hatchback, the company has found cash flow to be a problem in the past; with Apple buying the company, this problem would effectively go away.

That's not to say that Tesla would be so keen to sell up. It may be that a partnership would work out to be a better deal for both companies. This would make sense, as Apple is already working with car manufacturers to get iOS into cars. With iOS 7's iOS in the Car feature, smartphones can be operated via the car's built-in controls and screen. Siri Eyes Free would let you do the same thing with voice commands. With iOS in the Car, the aim is to let people access music, make calls, send and receive messages and get directions, all from their iOS device.

With neither Apple or Tesla ready to comment on the alleged meeting, there's not much more to report at the moment. However, if Apple were to buy Tesla, we could be in for some interesting times, for both the technology and car markets.

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