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Here’s how Apple is applying AI to its products before its own GPT launches

Published Aug 4th, 2023 2:49PM EDT
Siri on the Vision Pro headset. Apple GPT
Image: Apple Inc.

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Yesterday, Apple held a conference call for its third-quarter earnings. While revenue fell slightly to $81.8 billion, the company set a new all-time record for its services business. After the announcements, Apple’s CEO Tim Cook answered some questions from journalists.

Asked about Artificial Intelligence amid no mentions of this technology over the past events, Tim Cook told Reuters that Apple has been investing in generative AI for years now.

“We’ve been doing research across a wide range of AI technologies, including generative AI, for years. We’re going to continue investing and innovating and responsibly advancing our products with these technologies to help enrich people’s lives,” Tim Cook said. “Obviously, we’re investing a lot, and it is showing up in the R&D spending that you’re looking at.”

For the fiscal year so far, research and development spending hit $22.61 billion, about $3.12 billion higher tint in the previous year.

While Apple could eventually release its own GPT or integrate Artificial Intelligence into its products with Final Cut Pro or Xcode, the company has been using other terms to talk about AI.

Apple products and solutions using AI

Some keywords that Apple uses to talk about AI are “machine learning” and “neural engine.” For example, with iOS 17, if you listen to an ABBA song and then check the Spotlight tab, you’ll see a recommendation to check web details about the band. This is Artificial Intelligence.

With the new autocorrection language model, Apple also uses AI to predict what you will write or intend to say. This is also AI. The company uses AI for analyzing photos, and it will be even more interesting once the Journal app in iOS 17 is available later this year, as it will combine several pieces of information from your iPhone, but without them ever leaving your device.

From how it handles Focus Mode to how it understands you are driving with CarPlay on, these are all AI technologies being used. Regarding photos, Apple has been taking on computational photography for years, and Smart HDR 4 and Photonic Engine are a few of these next-level technologies put into practice.

It’s important to note that Apple has been cautious about AI, as people also see this technology poorly. There are several stories about chatbots giving wrong information, being aggressive, weird, and even against minorities.

Siri, for example, can’t perform incredible tasks, but it also won’t give you wrong information or tell you to harm yourself or others. That said, Apple may be studying the best way to approach Artificial Intelligence in a way that helps users but also doesn’t fright them.

Lastly, it’s important to highlight a previous report from Bloomberg that says Apple is working on its own generative AI language. Still, it might never launch to users, as it’s currently restricted to employees. That said, the company recently stated it’s already using the results of its own generative AI language model in real products that we see with Maps and Photos apps, for example.

BGR will continue to follow Apple’s efforts in AI.

José Adorno Tech News Reporter

José is a Tech News Reporter at BGR. He has previously covered Apple and iPhone news for 9to5Mac, and was a producer and web editor for Latin America broadcaster TV Globo. He is based out of Brazil.