Apple has always been a forward-thinking company but its unwillingness to embrace AI has been considered a “pretty big miss” internally. Now, it is trying to catch up by pumping millions of dollars a year into AI development and a few of its use cases have been revealed.
In a recent Bloomberg newsletter, Mark Gurman spoke to people familiar with the matter who have acknowledged that Apple executives have been “caught off guard » by the rise of AI.
John Giannandrea and Craig Federighi, the senior vice presidents behind AI and software engineering, are the main people tackling this effort. Eddy Cue is also on the team in some capacity and they are on track to spend $1 billion a year on AI development.
What’s Apple putting AI in?
The first major place you will spot AI improvement in the future is with Siri implementation. This will make responses quicker and smarter. With the Neural Engine upgrades present in things like the Apple Watch Series 9, this could hint at potentially better on-device Siri too.
Apple’s own large language model (LLM) is currently being developed to improve both Siri and the Messages app, allowing it to auto-complete sentences more effectively.
In an effort to foster coding on Apple devices, AI is being developed for use in tools like Xcode, which will help people write code quicker and more efficiently. This is just one of many consumer apps with AI development in the works. Apple Music may receive AI-generated playlists and apps like Pages and Keynote are due to receive tools to automatically generate slides and information upon request.
One of the big debates internally is whether the AI approach should be in the cloud, allowing users with better connections to get faster responses, or on-device, making it harder to continue developing AI on the fly. Though on-device AI support is more usable for most people, AI algorithms will develop slower as access to AI-driven data is much harder to get. As Apple executives have already missed out on years of focused AI development, they don’t want to miss out a second time.