The extent of Apple's ambitions in the automobile market have taken centerstage—previously occupied by rumblings of a tablet or television set—in the canon of long-running rumors about the company's future plans. CEO Tim Cook again addressed the issue Feb. 26 during the company's annual shareholder's meeting in Cupertino, Calif. Asked about the potential for an iCar of sorts, Business Insider reported he said:
Do you remember when you were a kid, and Christmas Eve, it was so exciting, you weren't sure what was going to be downstairs? Well, it's going to be Christmas Eve for a while.
Before answering, Cook kidded his questioner "maybe I should have called on someone else."
In a recent interview with Fortune, he addressed the spate of hires in the car space many have taken as confirmation of the firm's interest in challenging locals Google and Tesla, not to mention potential competitors in Detroit. "The great thing about being here is we’re curious people. We explore technologies, and we explore products," Cook told the magazine. "And we’re always thinking about ways that Apple can make great products that people love, that help them in some way. And we don’t go into very many categories, as you know. We edit very much. We talk about a lot of things and do fewer. We debate many things and do a lot fewer."
Tesla CEO Elon Musk has called Apple's plans around building a car an "open secret," something Apple itself has never confirmed. Reports about the project, supposedly called "Project Titan" internally, claim that some 600 employees are attached. Steve Zadesky, the executive many think in charge of Titan, recently left the company.