The car, however, didn't work as advertised. It could drive, turn corners and stop on a dime. But the fancy technology features VW had promised were either absent or broken. The company's programmers hadn't yet figured out how to update the car's software remotely. Its futuristic head-up display that was supposed to flash speed, directions and other data onto the windshield didn't function.
Tesla has given the first look at its new tabless battery cell, dubbed 4680, and Roadrunner production line that, according to CEO Elon Musk, 'will make full-size cars in the same way to cars are made.' The tabless battery was first unveiled in September during the firm's Battery Day, but was only shown by Musk via a PowerPoint presentation. Now, the time has come for Musk to show the world what Tesla has been working on at its pilot battery factory in Fremont, Texas. The one-minute clip shows the white and blue battery moving through different assembly stages with the help of armed and wheeled robots. Tesla also used this opportunity to announce it is taking applications for manufacturing jobs at its planned battery facilities in Berlin and Texas.
While CES was a bit different this year, we still managed to check out a number of inspiring new devices, apps and services. While we acknowledged the most promising tech in Engadget's Best of CES awards, there remain a bunch of gadgets that didn't make the list that will be worth checking out when they actually hit shelves later this year. Things like HP's new Dragonfly laptops, TCL's 8K TVs and Cowin's two-piece soundbar are all things to look forward to as 2021 progresses (and some are even available already). Here are some of the CES 2021 gadgets you may have missed this week. Cherlynn Low found a lot to like about last year's HP Dragonfly laptop: it was lightweight at 2.2 pounds, had a great battery life and an attractive design.
The upcoming Cadillac Lyriq SUV is the first electric car for the Cadillac car brand, but it's the reimagined dashboard display spanning 33 inches across that attracts the most attention. Mercedes-Benz also has a massive 56-inch Hyperscreen that will be available soon in its first EV. These car screens and others introduced at the annual tech show CES feature a new user interface that looks more like a well-rendered video game than an infotainment display to turn up the heat or play a podcast. Past CES shows used to wow with announcements about bigger and bigger dashboard screens, but now it's about what's on them. The Lyriq's 33-inch LED display stands out on its own, but its graphics feel almost too sharp for a screen stuck in a car.
Just two months after announcing the Airpeak in a vague press release and equally mysterious video, Sony has shown off its new drone in a virtual CES 2021 presentation. The Airpeak supports Sony's Alpha series of mirrorless cameras and uses AI to keep images steady as it flies through the sky. Sony's drone is designed for "adventurous creators," according to company president and CEO Kenichiro Yoshida. It has four rotors, two landing arms that lift with takeoff, and it all looks mighty sleek in action. The Airpeak will launch in the spring at an undisclosed price point.
Eta Compute had already developed its own ASIC chip and system board for low-power applications. Now it will devote its effort to making software tuned to Synaptics's chips. Smart buildings, smart cities, smart transportation -- such applications of the Internet of Things have been part of the lore of technology companies for over a decade now. But what does it really mean for there to be sensors that are constantly measuring the ambient noise of rooms, or watching people move about, day and night? That kind of constant surveillance may be coming to some built environments as soon as later this year, thanks to the arrival of chips and software that are dramatically more efficient at running algorithms within the tightest of energy constraints.
Hyundai and Apple might not be wasting much time with their electric car discussions. As Reuters reports, Korea IT News has claimed that the two companies plan to sign a partnership for self-driving electric cars by March. Production would start at Kia's factory in the state of Georgia, with roughly 100,000 EVs rolling off the line as soon as 2024. A "beta" Apple car could be ready in 2022, the Korean news outlet said. Reuters previously said Apple's vehicle might lean on cutting-edge battery technology that would extend range, improve safety and avoid the use of cobalt.
Tesla's annual sales rose 36% in 2020, but the electric car company came short of its annual goal to deliver 500,000 vehicles. The company said over the weekend that it delivered 499,500 for the year, including 180,570 SUVs and sedans for the October through December period. CEO Elon Musk set a goal of delivering 500,000 vehicles in 2020 before the coronavirus pandemic hit, and Tesla stuck to that goal even though the virus forced its only U.S. assembly plant to close for several weeks in the spring. In the first nine months of the year, Tesla reported that it delivered just over 318,000 vehicles worldwide, including a record 139,300 in the third quarter. To reach a half million, Tesla would have had to shatter the record and deliver 181,650 vehicles from October through December.
New York (CNN Business)Talk of a possible Apple car is back. Apple (AAPL) hasn't commented publicly on its plans for the project, nicknamed Titan, so it's not clear exactly what will come of the effort. Some who follow the company think it could release a whole Apple-branded, electric, self-driving car. Others think it's more likely Apple will partner with existing automakers to sell an operating system (iDrive, maybe?), self-driving tools or other technology. There are some clues available, though.
Electric vehicles haven't taken over yet, but in 2020 nearly every automaker was discussing its plans for the segment. Between regulations muscling combustion engines out and advancements in battery technology and infrastructure, the groundwork is in place for electrified vehicles to take the center stage. Andrew Tarantola runs down the year's biggest headlines in EVs, and yes, that naturally includes a lot of Tesla and Elon Musk discussion. Stay tuned all the way through, since conventional automakers like Volvo, Ford, Hyundai and GM had news that you shouldn't forget about as we head into 2021. And that's before we even get to interesting electric car startups like Lucid and Rivian.