Apple reportedly courting OpenAI to develop AI features for iPhone

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The Cupertino company is also considering a partnership with Google.

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Apple reportedly courting OpenAI to develop AI features for iPhone

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Apple is reportedly on the hunt for a big tech partner to help shore up its flagging artificial intelligence (AI) offerings, with a specific focus on bringing th iPhone’s capabilities up to speed. 

Per a report from Bloomberg citing multiple sources, Apple and OpenAI are deep into discussions concerning the further integration of generative AI technologies on iOS.

However, previous reports also indicate that Apple is still shopping around with Google on the hook as another potential cloud partner.

Apple artificial intelligence

The Cupertino company’s AI ambitions appear to have fizzled over the past few years. Where once Apple’s walled garden approach to AI development seemed to indicate that it might have some mysterious tricks up its sleeve now, in 2024, the company’s flagship offering, the iPhone, is starting to show signs of lagging behind its AI-first competitors.

Arguably, the shift from internal development to external partnerships was signalled in May of 2022 when Ian Goodfellow, often referred to as the “GANfather” for his contributions to the field of AI, left his post as director of machine learning over Apple’s return to office policy.

Generative AI

In the time since Goodfellow’s departure, Apple has remained busy in the AI sector. The company recently released a bevy of open-source large language models, eight in total, complete with code and training logs.

While this signals a continuing dedication to AI and machine learning, it’s unlikely that any of the released models could be considered competitive with available closed models such as OpenAI’s ChatGPT and Google’s Gemini.

Market capitalization

As such, it’s possible that Apple is trying to finalize its generative AI partnerships ahead of its annual Worldwide Developers Conference (WWDC) in June.

The WWDC event is the typical showcase for the company’s biggest and most impactful products and, so far, 2024 has been a relatively quiet year for Apple.

Meanwhile, the company’s largest competitor, Microsoft, has had a metaphorical liscene to print money ever since it partnered up with AI sector leader OpenAI. As of current, Microsoft has a commanding lead as the world’s most valuable company by market capitalization with a total value of $3.019 trillion against Apple’s second place score of $2.614 trillion.

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