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macrumors bot
Original poster
Apr 12, 2001
56,519
19,275


There have been multiple sightings of a mysterious van with a strange apparatus on its roof in Concord, CA and, according to CBS affiliate KPIX 5, the car is leased to Apple. Bay Area blog Claycord posted photos of the Dodge Caravan earlier today.

applevan1.jpg
Photo via Claycord

One possible use for the car could be for a mapping project, as the cameras on top of the vehicle are similar to other mapping cars. The Cupertino company has been planning on significantly improving its Maps application though, with plans for transit directions, improved points-of-interest data, indoor mapping and more. It would be likely that Apple would be prepping a feature similar to Google Street View or Bing StreetSide.

Claycord, however, noted that the Apple car looked similar to a self-driving Dodge Caravan spotted in New York in September 2014. Technology analyst Rob Enderle, who spoke to KPIX, also agreed that it's a self-driving car rather than a mapping car.
“Too many cameras,” said Enderle. “It has cameras that are angled down at all four corners of the vehicle.”
As noted by AppleInsider, Google's Street View cars do use a total of 15 5-megapixel cameras to stitch together its images. Apple's leased minivan appears to have similar technology, with 12 cameras that could potentially be used to stitch together images for a Street View-like picture.

Apple is not one of the six companies who have a permit for testing driverless cars, but Enderle says it wouldn't matter, noting that Apple could have a partnership with a manufacturer that allows them to lease and test a driverless car without a partner.

An Apple spokesperson told KPIX that the company had no comment.

Article Link: Mysterious Apple Car Spotted Roaming Bay Area Streets
 
Last edited:

BeyondtheTech

macrumors 68020
Jun 20, 2007
2,131
641
I couldn't be the only person who got a Safari push notification from MacRumors and got stoked when they read "Mysterious Apple Car Spotted..." Apple's making a car?!
 

Tankmaze

macrumors 68000
Mar 7, 2012
1,694
336
Apple Street View ? how cool is that to see the street view in the iPhone !!
but you can already do that with google earth app...
 

Macboy Pro

macrumors 6502a
Feb 16, 2011
730
52
Well if Apple is going to release a car, we know it will start off huge and get thinner and thinner each year as they take away its functionality.
 

idioticfolly

macrumors newbie
Aug 7, 2014
7
0
TX
Oh man, people are going to think Apple definitely will be releasing this. How long till the concept videos arrive?
 

JoEw

macrumors 68000
Nov 29, 2009
1,535
994
1. Apple is looking to pioneer automated mapping allowing for cheaper more up to date street views.
2. Apple is prototyping their self driving car technology for the Apple Car :D
 

macbookairman

macrumors 6502a
Jan 15, 2008
898
6
Nebraska
Apple Street View ? how cool is that to see the street view in the iPhone !!
but you can already do that with google earth app...

I'm sorry, but this response never makes any sense to me. You're suggesting Apple not make any effort to improve their maps app, because the Google Earth app already has street view? Shouldn't Apple continue to improve their maps app? It seems like it benefits everyone for them to be adding these features into iOS's native maps app.
 

Macboy Pro

macrumors 6502a
Feb 16, 2011
730
52
1. Apple is looking to pioneer automated mapping allowing for cheaper more up to date street views.
2. Apple is prototyping their self driving car technology for the Apple Car :D

Apple never equals cheaper :)
 

MikeAnd

Suspended
Jan 8, 2008
105
112
Technology analyst Rob Enderle, who spoke to KPIX, also agreed that it's a self-driving car rather than a mapping car.

Usually when Rob Enderle says something, you can safely assume the opposite is true. So I'm guessing it's a mapping car.
 

Rogifan

macrumors Core
Nov 14, 2011
23,062
29,204
So basically they're working on something like street view. But that would be boring so lets throw out self driving car rumors. I'm sure Rob Endele will find himself on CNBC tomorrow with the talking heads speculating what this might be/mean. :rolleyes:
 

SamGabbay

macrumors 6502a
Oct 15, 2011
734
756
Next thing you know, we'll find out that it was stolen from a bar... parking lot.
 

idioticfolly

macrumors newbie
Aug 7, 2014
7
0
TX
And the leaked car covers and wheel sizes. It will be released right after the Apple Television Set from 2012.

Let's make rumors up right now so it can spread on the internet:
Chinese automanufactuer SAIC Motor to build the car based off of Apple's design in California. (Don't mind the Caravan it's a decoy)
SAIC Motor to announce job opening for a 'smart' car mass manufacturing.
Car to have Gold, White and Space Grey options available.
Anyone else can add to this – it's all true after all.
 
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