Five takeaways from Apple’s big announcement

June 11, 2024
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Lots of tech companies want to make artificial intelligence part of your everyday life. Google and Microsoft are putting AI-generated answers into search results, sometimes with hilarious results. Meta has added an AI chatbot to Instagram and its other apps, annoying some users

Now, it’s Apple’s turn to show why it might be the first to succeed. 

Apple on Monday unveiled sweeping plans to put AI in nearly every corner of the iPhone. The company said it’ll be adding AI functions to the native apps for email, messages and photos, as well as to app notifications and the abilities of Siri. It said it’ll even use AI to allow people to generate custom emojis. 

Think of the announcement as a top-to-bottom makeover of the iPhone, with AI plugged in wherever the company’s software engineers could think to do it. The idea is that using AI on the iPhone will seem normal — so normal that sometimes you might not even notice it’s there. 

Apple appears to be embarking on the changes mostly without help from other tech companies. Although it announced a partnership with OpenAI for ChatGPT access, it’s a limited integration that requires Apple users to opt in, and it’s not exclusive; Apple said it intends to support other AI models in the future, putting ChatGPT and its competitors in a kind of secondary role.

Never short on ego, Apple is calling the system “Apple Intelligence” — seemingly trying to redefine “AI” from an initialism for artificial intelligence to one that refers to the Cupertino, California, company. 

And Apple said it’s not waiting long to introduce its ideas to customers, rolling out the new AI capabilities this summer on iPhones, iPads and Macs. 

Here’s how to make sense of what Apple unveiled during the two-hour kickoff of its annual event, the Apple Worldwide Developers Conference. 

Takeaway No. 1: AI, but personalized 

As powerful as chatbots like OpenAI’s ChatGPT can seem, they know little to nothing about you. But your Apple devices know a lot about you: from who’s in your photos to whom you’re texting and emailing. 

That data may be Apple’s secret sauce, allowing a device like an iPhone to give you answers or tools tailored to you, based on data from your device, rather than trained on generic data from across the web. 



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