The Apple Car - Innovation Or A Financial Disaster?

Discussion in 'Off-Topic' started by Glenn Holland, Feb 26, 2015.

  1. Glenn Holland

    Thread Starter Member

    Dec 26, 2014
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    It's in the news: Apple is supposedly planning on building a car:

    http://www.designnews.com/author.asp?section_id=1386&doc_id=276623

    While I can foresee Apple as providing a computing platform for use in automobiles, the idea of being another car manufacturer is really not a profitable idea and it may be a recipe for the company's financial ruin.

    Tesla's plug in car is already a very poor business model and huge government subsidies are the only way this company is allowed to stay in business -or how it was able to go into business to begin with. The auto industry is a very, very risky business and the long established companies are the only ones that should be trying to build complete cars.

    Embedded automotive control systems - yes, a complete car - no, no, no.
     
    Last edited: Feb 26, 2015
  2. Brownout

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    Jan 10, 2012
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    As with many other products, new manufactures will shake up the automobile industry. Older companies will either evolve or die. Tesla's products are the kind if innovation that will be very successful going forward. There are challenges, but as we've seen time and time again, those challenges will be overcome.
     
  3. Glenn Holland

    Thread Starter Member

    Dec 26, 2014
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    The auto industry doesn't need more manufacturers and the existing companies are best suited because they offer proven technology.

    Regarding Tesla, the company's business model is very flawed for the following reasons:
    • Building a complete car from scratch just to market a plug in vehicle is not a productive strategy. Tesla should have focused on building just the electric drive train and marketed it to the existing automakers.
    • Furthermore, the whole concept of battery powered cars is a waste of money and resources. Owners are unpleasantly finding out that they are paying more for electricity than gas. Most power plants still rely on fossil fuels which are the boogyman for producing greenhouse gases and global warming.
    • If more electric cars come into use, the power grid will be over stressed and there will be brown outs or rolling black outs.
    Finally, Tesla's past, present, and future relies on political connections. If the company loses government funding, it will drop like a rock.
     
    Last edited: Feb 26, 2015
  4. Brownout

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    The power grid need to be updated. More power can come from renewable sources, wind, solar hydro, geothermal, and so on. Renewables are the future. Companies like Tesla are leaning forward and leading the future. Tesla isn't only building the most innovative autos, but also building an entire eco system. This is big thinking and big ideas that's needed in the industry. Although Tesla was able to get some government funding, now paid back, their innovation and ability to raise private money is actually more crucial to their success. By all measure, the company is poised to do very well in and for the future.
     
  5. MrChips

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    Oct 2, 2009
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    I had built a prototype computer similar to the Apple Macintosh a couple of years before it was launched.
    Then I envisioned the need for a tablet computer like the iPad.
    I think Apple will launch a UAV camera soon.
     
  6. Glenn Holland

    Thread Starter Member

    Dec 26, 2014
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    Tesla was able to pay back it's government subsidy because the government is providing subsidies to buyers of electric cars and even more subsidies to install charging stations throughout the country.

    I live in the San Francisco Bay Area and I can tell you the economy here is loaded with "pork" including Tesla and other "green energy" companies. Many of them purport to have a solution to every energy problem, but they've failed to deliver on their hype.

    In fact, Obama has come here at least 20 times for "fund raising" -IE- bribe baiting and Tesla is one of his biggest contributors. I recall that Solyndria (solar power) was also one of Obama's stellar energy companies that left a $500 Million gaping hole after it went belly up.
     
    Last edited: Feb 27, 2015
  7. Brownout

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    There is no such hole in the Department of Energy loan programs. Solyndria gets all the press, but fact is the program is wildly successful, and actually adds money to government coffers. Taxpayers are getting positive returns on the money that was invested, as well as technology that's being developed and commercialized. Green energy has not failed, and is the fastest growing technology in the energy sector.
     
  8. MikeML

    AAC Fanatic!

    Oct 2, 2009
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    Glenn,
    Go find another forum where you can bash the Pres!

    A friend of mine has a Tesla. He recharges it with his own solar panels, so is not stressing the grid. I drove it. 0-60mph in a neck-snapping 6sec.
     
    Brownout likes this.
  9. Glenn Holland

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    Dec 26, 2014
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    Government agencies here in California are buying electric cars and I can tell you that they are paying like Hell just for the electricity.

    On the subject of solar energy, the city of San Francisco installed about one square block of solar cells on the roof of an underground reservoir. There's one little problem: The area is one of the foggiest parts of the city and many homes have to turn the lights ON in the daytime even during the summer months.

    Even worse, the government is planning on installing even more of this snake oil technology.
     
    Last edited: Feb 27, 2015
  10. Brownout

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    Energy generated from this "snake oil" technology has increased 138, 683% over the last 10 years.
     
  11. Glenn Holland

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    Yeah right. And just how much was the increase in conventional energy used to manufacture all those solar panels in the first place?
     
  12. Brownout

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    At current technology, the energy payback period, which measure the amount of time it takes for a solar panel to produce an amount of energy equal to the energy required to manufacture it, is 1 - 4 years. Since the average lifetime of a solar panel is 25 years, the panel should produce 6.25 - 25 times the energy took to make it.
     
  13. Glenn Holland

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    Dec 26, 2014
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    That's with the sun shining on it 24/7 at power level available at the earth's equator. However the "Devil's in the details" like the sun goes down at night and cloudy weather.
     
  14. Brownout

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    Well, you're wrong about that. That's for the average service of deployed panels. That's why there is a spread, because the numbers depend on the installation, sunny days and other factors. All these issues are already factored in the numbers.
     
  15. Glenn Holland

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    Dec 26, 2014
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    Can you give me the name and address of a building owner that's getting a return on investment like that?

    Panels on city buildings here in San Francisco are running at a net loss, but what the hell "Taxpayer's Money Is Nobody's Money".
     
  16. Brownout

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    Any single building is irrelevant. To make a complete study, it's necessary to look at numerous installations. Stanford did just that:

    source: http://news.stanford.edu/news/2013/april/pv-net-energy-040213.html

    And that was just for a single year and includes older, less efficient technologies.

    Also, industry is catching on:

     
  17. Glenn Holland

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    Dec 26, 2014
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    I can tell you this from knowing people who bought into the solar myth, even with government subsidies, they're still losing their assets. Meanwhile, the politically connected solar companies are walking away with their pockets full of $$$.
     
  18. JoeJester

    AAC Fanatic!

    Apr 26, 2005
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    From the article ...
    Comparing dollars and vegetables is never a good comparison, unless your talking the cost of vegetables.
     
  19. MrChips

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    Solar energy is a free gift. So is fossil fuel which took 500 million years of solar energy to accumulate.
    What does cost matter when releasing stored carbon at the current rate is going to result in the demise of humanity?
     
  20. shortbus

    AAC Fanatic!

    Sep 30, 2009
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    And no one that makes this argument EVER brings up the corporate welfare that the fossil fuel companies get. They get many times the government money/tax breaks that the fledgling alternate energy companies get. This is because fossil fuel has been getting the welfare so long that it is embedded in our mind set. All the while fossil fuel makes massive profits.

    Change from giving the breaks to fossil fuel and give them to alternative energy and you will see alternative energy grow by leaps and bounds. Just like fossil fuel did "back in the day".
     
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