Apple takes strides towards developing generative AI

July 19, 2023

Apple AI

Apple has broken cover after revealing that they’re working on a generative AI some of their engineers call “Apple GPT.”

Apple has developed its own infrastructure, called “Ajax,” for creating large language models (LLMs). Based on this infrastructure, Apple has allegedly engineered an in-house chatbot.

According to confidential sources from Bloomberg, Apple’s AI research has snowballed, with several teams collaborating on the project.

Earlier in the year, at Apple’s WWDC keynote, they were conspicuously silent on AI and have kept cautiously distant from their tech giant rivals Google, Meta, and Microsoft when it comes to the technology.

Despite pioneering AI through products like Siri, Apple didn’t keep pace with the rapidly evolving market for generative AI tools. 

After news broke about Apple’s AI development, the company’s shares surged by 2.3%, reaching a high of $198.23.

Apple is a generative AI outsider

While Apple has developed AI for Siri and the iPhone camera, they’ve largely kept their distance from generative AI models like Bard or ChatGPT.

But then again, have they really needed it? Apple’s products are compact and streamlined to their dedicated user base, and generative AI is largely surplus to requirements.

Apple’s CEO Tim Cook remains reserved regarding the influx of generative AI services. According to Bloomberg, at a conference in May, he stated that while AI technology holds promise, there are still a “number of issues that need to be sorted.” 

Nevertheless, he assured Apple would continue integrating AI into its products on a “very thoughtful basis.”

In the end, Apple seems to have given in to generative AI FOMO. In June, there were early signs that Apple had stepped up AI R&D, including multiple job ads for researchers experienced in machine learning (ML). These efforts seem to be coming to fruition, and we can expect Apple to enter the AI market soon. 

Despite the progress, Apple is grappling with how to introduce generative AI to consumers. 

One possibility is integrating advanced AI with Siri, improving the voice assistant’s ability to perform complex tasks. Siri has fallen behind her counterparts, partly because of lackluster AI development – generative AI would enable Siri to answer advanced queries and communicate in sophisticated natural language.

Apple will likely find a way to slowly integrate generative AI into its products and services over the coming months and years. 

According to insiders, the public can expect further announcements at the year’s end or early 2024. 

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Sam Jeans

Sam is a science and technology writer who has worked in various AI startups. When he’s not writing, he can be found reading medical journals or digging through boxes of vinyl records.


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