Apple has ‘a lot of anxiety’ about ChatGPT and generative AI


Apple has been surprised by the rapid development of AI tools like OpenAI’s ChatGPT and is now moving fast to develop competitive features for its devices.

At its recent developer conference, Apple did not talk about AI. But it did talk a lot about “machine learning” that will be used in many Apple products. Examples include the improved autocorrect in iOS 17, which is based on a language model, or the computer vision wonder “Apple Vision Pro”.

Has Apple slept on AI?

Apple’s confident messaging at its developer conference has countered the perception that the company is sleeping on AI.

But according to Bloomberg’s Apple correspondent Mark Gurman, there is some truth to that impression.



Apple was caught off guard by the tech industry’s sudden focus on AI and has been working hard since late last year to catch up, Gurman reports, citing insider information.

Gurman quotes an insider as saying that Apple is scared and feels it has missed out on an important development. “There’s a lot of anxiety about this and it’s considered a pretty big miss internally.”

Even Siri, which seems like an obvious product for AI improvements, especially with ChatGPT’s latest audio features, has yet to benefit from advances in generative AI.

Leaders in Apple’s AI offensive

John Giannandrea and Craig Federighi, Apple’s senior vice presidents of AI and software engineering, and Eddy Cue, head of services, are leading the company into generative AI. Together, they are said to have an annual budget of $1 billion. Compared to the investments of Microsoft, OpenAI, or Google, this still sounds modest for a tech giant like Apple.

Giannandrea’s team is focused on developing the technology for a new AI system and reworking Siri to make it smarter. The improved version of Siri could come out next year, but the technology is still immature and there are safety concerns.


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