This week, American auto giant Ford Motor announced the hiring of Peter Stern, who previously served as Apple’s vice president of services, as well as the creation of its own division specializing in digital technologies. According to Bloomberg, Ford’s top management expects to increase its revenue from software services tenfold over the next few years. Already, Ford has approximately 500,000 commercial vehicle subscribers, and they bring in hundreds of millions of dollars in revenue in the aggregate, but in the future these figures will increase fold.
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Providing software services like autopilot is highly profitable from a financial point of view. Ford’s rate of return in this area exceeds 50%, while the company receives no more than 8.3% of the rate of return on the production and sale of cars. Ford will transition its all-powered vehicles to a new digital services platform by 2025 or 2026, which will allow the company to leverage the subscription mechanism. Recall that in one of the patent applications, the company even described the technology of seizing a vehicle from a negligent payer of leasing fees, when the car, under the control of automation, moves itself to a car impound.