TMC is an independent, primarily volunteer organization that relies on ad revenue to cover its operating costs. Please consider whitelisting TMC on your ad blocker or making a Paypal contribution here: paypal.me/SupportTMC

"Radical Patent Move" Speculation

Discussion in 'TSLA Investor Discussions' started by aznt1217, Jun 3, 2014.

  1. aznt1217

    aznt1217 Active Member

    Joined:
    Aug 27, 2012
    Messages:
    2,239
    Location:
    New York, NY
    After today's shareholder meeting, I wanted to start to bounce some ideas around of the possibilities of opening up Tesla's patents while still upholding fiduciary responsibility to shareholders.

    I actually think many hints were given today. My main theory goes something like this:

    We know Tesla's main IP is supercharging and power trains. We also know Elon is open to licensing out superchargers to other manufacturers. I think what will happen is this, Elon will make the battery technology and power train technology open under the condition that a nominal royalty is paid to Tesla AND the participating companies put up capital for a Gigafactory or Supercharger network advancement. To me, this is like triple incentive for those who choose to adopt the technology.

    Another thing that's interesting to me is I think Tesla will partner with either Toyota and Daimler to share tech in a similar arrangement to what I mentioned above. Toyota wants more. There is no question about this and Akio Toyoda is quite the car guy and isn't afraid to make big moves. I suspect they'll invest in the factory with a multi tiered and multi year deal for power trains.

    Let's discuss. Vice chairmans and future CEOs included lol.
     
  2. Familial Rhino

    Familial Rhino Endangerous Herbivore

    Joined:
    Feb 27, 2014
    Messages:
    1,053
    Location:
    Toronto, ON
    #2 Familial Rhino, Jun 3, 2014
    Last edited: Jun 3, 2014
    I find your theory plausible. I think he cannot believe what he's seeing: established manufacturers sitting on their collective bums complaining "waaahh, it's too hard!!", while their CEOs are pleading with customers "please don't buy our electric cars, we lose money on every single one."

    Jesus, we'll show you how to make them. Will you make them?

    Or maybe, as someone suggested, he's thinking this is the only way to destabilize the system radically enough to turn the tide against the old dynosaur (and dyno-based) monopolies. (I know they're not monopolies, but they do have their hands firmly planted on the world's gonads.)
     
  3. aznt1217

    aznt1217 Active Member

    Joined:
    Aug 27, 2012
    Messages:
    2,239
    Location:
    New York, NY
    Yes to that point, I think Elon is fed up with the crap that's on the market. The best they could make was an i3, ELR, and upcoming i8. I just thought of something else too, Tesla is a hardcore engineering firm at heart... Tesla may offer to engineer a car for the companies using Tesla power trains and IP and take a cut.
     
  4. Familial Rhino

    Familial Rhino Endangerous Herbivore

    Joined:
    Feb 27, 2014
    Messages:
    1,053
    Location:
    Toronto, ON
    Of course, this is what they did with Mercedes and Toyota already. What he may be contemplating, though, is one such partner willing to commit *at scale*, and who has the resources necessary to build those multiple gigafactories that are necessary to put a dent in the car universe. Access to Tesla's tech may be the incentive that would allow the partner's CEO to push such a radical strategy to his (or her, though I don't see it) board. Let's not forget that the other CEOs are themselves hostages.

    On edit: and you're right, this would be different, in that they would license the tech behind the whole thing, instead of just selling them powertrains.
     
  5. ecarfan

    ecarfan Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Sep 21, 2013
    Messages:
    10,359
    Location:
    San Mateo, CA
    Clearly Elon remains disappointed that the other manufacturers aren't moving forward with EVs and are stuck offering limited range "city cars" that are primarily compliance vehicles, with a few exceptions.

    If Tesla offers to license powertrain technology to other companies they have a fiduciary duty to make a decent profit doing so, they can't give it away too cheaply.

    I think he was clear that allowing other manufacturers Supercharger access is open to discussion if the other company provides the appropriate level of financial support. Makes sense to me.
     
  6. Zythryn

    Zythryn MS 70D, MX 90D

    Joined:
    Mar 18, 2009
    Messages:
    1,660
    Location:
    Minnesota
    I disagree that Toyota wants more.
    They used the Rav4ev as a compliance vehicle, did not extend the agreement and have refused to roll out the PiP nationwide.
    They have publicly downplayed plugin cars in favor of the hydrogen boondoggle.
    Their recent Lexus adds have inaccurately slammed all plugin vehicles.

    Diamler perhaps, but Toyota is acting towards electrics as GM did towards hybrids 10 years ago.
     
  7. uselesslogin

    uselesslogin Enthusiast

    Joined:
    Jun 13, 2013
    Messages:
    1,300
    Location:
    Omaha, NE
    I think open sourcing the patents would make a lot if sense if there is a way to do that legally. Don't forget that open source licences obligate others to share their improvements with the community. It would certainly speed the adoption of electric cars if any company could collaborate on the designs. As a shareholder I would justify any loss to Tesla's competitive advantage as anti-trust lawsuit insurance. I really don't want Tesla to be the only automaker out there.
     
  8. RobStark

    RobStark Active Member

    Joined:
    Jul 2, 2013
    Messages:
    2,918
    Location:
    Los Angeles
    Elon just said at shareholder's meeting that Toyota wanted a high volume powertrain deal.

    Each battery cell devoted to selling to Toyota is a battery cell not used to make more Model S and Model X so it does not make sense for Tesla to do since they make more money selling Tesla cars than powertrains to Toyota.

    But Elon said they may revisit in a year or two.
     
  9. Zythryn

    Zythryn MS 70D, MX 90D

    Joined:
    Mar 18, 2009
    Messages:
    1,660
    Location:
    Minnesota
    True, they had wanted more batteries. That doesn't translate into what they want to do in the future.
    Every interview, marketing choice and commercial mentioning electrics has been negative towards it.
    I do not believe the fact they requested more batteries in the past (and were told no) supports the idea that they want more in the future nearly as much as their actions show they are going a different direction (hydrogen).
     
  10. RobStark

    RobStark Active Member

    Joined:
    Jul 2, 2013
    Messages:
    2,918
    Location:
    Los Angeles
    They did not request a large powertrain deal a few months ago to supply RAVEV through May 2014.

    These deals are multi-year deals. At the very least it was about the short-medium term future.
     
  11. Teo

    Teo Banned

    Joined:
    Jun 4, 2014
    Messages:
    155
    Location:
    London, UK
    I have a theory. I think Elon is thinking about teaming up with governments to build city superchargers that all cars can use. This might start in the UK because there is big political support and the UK is a country big enough to encourage car companies to manufacture EVs at meaningful numbers. In big cities there are millions of cars and a lot of them can't charge at home. Here in London most people park their cars on the street in front of their house. I think in the long run charging will transition to on-street-charging in residential streets because overnight charging is better to balance the load on the grid, but it will start off with city superchargers for those who can't charge at home.
     
  12. TSLAopt

    TSLAopt Active Member

    Joined:
    May 20, 2013
    Messages:
    1,009
    Location:
    Northern Cal
    This is a great theory. Perhaps Tesla should start giving Loaners to govt. officials that are decision makers for long periods of time to help guide them into making more aggressive govt. policy to adopt EVs (e.g. Build more Superchargers and help build Giga factories).

    another theory I had was that perhaps he has google and Apple in mind with regards to opening the patents...perhaps he knows that the big automakers are so set in their ways they won't transition over to BEVs even if Tesla gives them the technology but perhaps he knows Google and Apple are just itching to get in this game of BEVs.
     
  13. Auzie

    Auzie Tree Hugger Member

    Joined:
    Jul 29, 2013
    Messages:
    1,903
    Location:
    Sydney
    Google car is already BEV. I am not aware of Apple moving into car making.

    Other car makers will loose money in a short term if they move to BEVs. They are making profits now so their CEOs will leave to their successors to move into BEVs. I am doubtful that they will move into BEVs in a short term even if Tesla opens up its patents.
     
  14. GSP

    GSP Member

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2007
    Messages:
    1,997
    Elon's possible offer to allow free use of some Tesla patents reminds me of Daimler-Benz allowing free use of all their safety patents. This was good PR for Daimler over the decades following WWII. A similar move could be good PR for Tesla with minimal risk to Tesla's shareholders of other automakers having the vision to take up Tesla on the offer.

    GSP
     
  15. Krugerrand

    Krugerrand Active Member

    Joined:
    Jul 13, 2012
    Messages:
    4,271
    Location:
    California
    That's an interesting idea. Are there parking meters in London? What if parking meters became outlets for EVs?
     
  16. aznt1217

    aznt1217 Active Member

    Joined:
    Aug 27, 2012
    Messages:
    2,239
    Location:
    New York, NY
    This is a good idea that didn't occur to me until I read this. It's actually VERY likely because if I recall correctly Elon is directly helping the UK government with energy initiatives and was given a title... If somebody could find the article that would be great. I think most urban centers are moving towards Muni meter units, but new machines with outlets isn't a bad idea.

    - - - Updated - - -

    What I can see happening is joint ventures in engineering happening. I'm almost positive that many employees of these respective tech companies own a model s and appreciate the engineering far more than we do. Elon is also on record saying how he believes in industry cross pollination. That's part of the reason why the model s is so special, because some SpaceX ideas were used in creating the car.
     
  17. arg

    arg Member

    Joined:
    Aug 22, 2012
    Messages:
    741
    Location:
    Cambridge, UK
    There's already a scheme to provide on-street charging for EV owners who don't have off-street charging:

    https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/government-funding-for-residential-on-street-charging-for-plug-in-vehicles-a-guide-for-members-of-the-public

    I haven't been able to find any signs of actual takeup of the scheme however; possibly because part of the funding is meant to come from local councils.

    There's supposedly more funding been allocated recently:

    https://www.gov.uk/government/news/hundreds-of-new-chargepoints-for-electric-cars
     
  18. ecarfan

    ecarfan Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Sep 21, 2013
    Messages:
    10,359
    Location:
    San Mateo, CA
    IMO Apple has no interest in building a car. It is completely outside of their core business.

    Google clearly does, though I don't understand why as it is also completely outside of their core business.
     
  19. SteveG3

    SteveG3 Active Member

    Joined:
    Sep 21, 2012
    Messages:
    1,675
    Location:
    US
    Interesting idea TSLAopt... if they do open up patents it does not have to be one size fits all. It could be cheap to existing automakers, but free to new entrants. All this said, if the battery patents are the direction Elon is thinking about, Panasonic will be a factor in this. Of course, Tesla could only open there own patents up, not Panasonic's, but if Tesla did this with its own patents and Samsung could potentially be such a new entrant, Panasonic might not be pleased with this.

    Re, SuperChargers patents opened for governments to help out with urban adoption, I like that. Elon recently said that they are looking at SCs not only in Chinese cities, but also U.S. Teo did mention that longer term on street charging makes more sense, and gave some reasons. Perhaps another reason SCs would only be a temporary solution is the impact on the car, both potential harm of only SuperCharging, and perhaps some loss of optimal pack management by not being plugged in overnight.
     
  20. PokerBroker

    PokerBroker Member

    Joined:
    Jul 11, 2013
    Messages:
    523
    Location:
    Minneapolis, MN
    Tesla is and will remain supply restricted beyond 2020... They barely have enough batteries to supply the Model S and X... And the gigafactory will not sustain 3rd gen and beyond... I find it hard to believe they will do any significant licensing deals where those components will go to other competing cars
     

Share This Page