Apple partners with OpenAI as it unveils ‘Apple Intelligence’, new iOS features

Apple has announced big changes for its popular devices as it rolls out generative artificial intelligence (AI) products to more than a billion people.

The tech giant also revealed new controls and personalization options for iOS 18 and announced when the Vision Pro headset will be coming to Australia.

Leading the Worldwide Developers Conference (WWDC) was a major new partnership with artificial intelligence company OpenAI to integrate ChatGPT software into iPhones and other devices.

Apple on Monday unveiled “Apple Intelligence,” its suite of new artificial intelligence features for its coveted devices, as it seeks to catch up with rivals racing ahead in adopting the white-hot technology.

This is a big change for the roughly 1.3 billion people who use iPhones worldwide, and it will also be rolled out to Apple’s laptops and iPads.

For months, Apple has been under pressure to convince skeptics of its AI strategy after Microsoft and Google launched products in quick succession.

But this latest move will take the Apple product experience “to new heights,” CEO Tim Cook said as he opened the annual WWDC at the tech giant’s headquarters in Cupertino, California’s Silicon Valley.

To this end, Apple partnered with OpenAI, which ushered in a new era for generative artificial intelligence in 2022 with the arrival of ChatGPT.

OpenAI was “very excited to be working with Apple to integrate ChatGPT into their devices later this year…I think you’re going to really like it,” company CEO Sam Altman posted on social media.

Apple Intelligence will also be added to the new version of the iOS 18 operating system, which was similarly unveiled on Monday at the weekly conference.

Apple executives emphasized that privacy safeguards were built into Apple Intelligence to make its digital assistant Siri and other products smarter while not stealing user data.

A big challenge for Apple, according to analysts, has been how to bring ChatGPT-style AI, which voraciously siphons data, into its products without undermining its heavily promoted user privacy and security.

The system “puts powerful generative models right at the core of your iPhone, iPad and Mac,” said Apple’s senior vice president of software engineering, Craig Federighi.

“It pulls from your personal context to provide you with the information that’s most useful and relevant to you, protecting your privacy every step of the way,” he said.

In particular, Apple Intelligence will allow users to create their own emoji based on a description in everyday language or create short summaries of emails in their inbox.

Users will be able to make their requests to Siri in writing or verbally.

The AI ​​improvements also included integrating ChatGPT with operating system models later this year, Mr. Federighi said.

“It sounds like Apple — if they need ChatGPT, they’re going to give it to you,” Techsponential analyst Avi Greengart said.

“Here is a special implementation.”

Silicon Valley is confident that generative artificial intelligence will fundamentally change the way users interact with smartphones and computers, but the technology is still in its early stages and the benefits are not yet entirely clear.

The announcements at WWDC set the stage for the expected release of the iPhone 16 later this year and opened the door to a “growth renaissance” for the company, said Daniel Ives, senior analyst at Wedbush Securities.

Mr. Cook signaled his commitment to artificial intelligence by putting more powerful AI-ready chips in iPad and MacBook releases earlier this year.

Elon Musk blasts Apple

Elon Musk slammed Apple for the announcement and warned of potential privacy issues.

The Tesla boss, who owns social media platform X, which is developing its own Grok-style ChatGPT service, has fired shots at Apple and the controversial artificial intelligence company over privacy and data concerns.

“It’s patently absurd that Apple isn’t smart enough to make its own AI, but is somehow able to ensure that OpenAI will protect your security and privacy!” the billionaire wrote on X.

“Apple has no idea what’s actually going on when your data is handed over to OpenAI. They sell you down the river.”

Apple Vision Pro

Apple also announced that Apple Vision Pro will expand to new countries and regions across Europe and Asia Pacific this month.

Customers in Australia can pre-order the Vision Pro from Friday 28 June at 10pm AEST, with availability from Friday 12 July.

The $6,000 headset “seamlessly merges digital content with the physical world to deliver powerful spatial experiences that change the way you work, collaborate, connect, relive memories, enjoy entertainment and much more,” the company says.

“Enthusiasm for Apple Vision Pro has been overwhelming, and we’re excited to bring the magic of spatial computing to more customers around the world,” said Mr. Cook.

“We can’t wait for more people to see the impossible become possible, whether it’s working and collaborating with an infinite screen for apps, reliving precious memories in three dimensions, watching TV shows and movies in a unique personal cinema. , or enjoying completely new spatial experiences that defy imagination.”

Apple has previewed a range of new “spatial computing” features for Vision Pro as part of its latest operating system update, visionOS 2.

The major update will introduce “a powerful way for users to create spatial photos using images already in their library” and “intuitive hand gestures to easily access important information at a glance”.

For example, while users can watch YouTube, Netflix and Amazon videos in an immersive “environment” in Safari, users can “touch panoramic photos and immerse themselves as the image wraps around them” while browsing web pages.

“Siri can also read and speak web page content while users are multitasking,” Apple says.

There are now more than 2,000 spatial apps designed for Apple Vision Pro, along with more than 1.5 million compatible iOS and iPadOS apps.

“Apple Vision Pro delivers revolutionary experiences for users and developers, and we’re excited to further advance spatial computing with visionOS 2 just months after its initial release,” said Mike Rockwell, Apple’s vice president of the Vision Products Group.

“From more seamless visionOS navigation to pushing the boundaries of how users connect with memories and enhancements to key Vision Pro applications, we can’t wait for users to experience a range of new capabilities with visionOS 2. And with a robust set of tools that enable developers to create richer spatial applications , visionOS 2 makes Vision Pro even more powerful.”

The Apple Vision Pro starts at $5,999 including GST, with 256GB, 512GB and 1TB capacities.

iOS 18

With the launch of iOS 18, Apple promises even greater integration in connected home devices, including TVs, AirPods and robotic vacuum cleaners.

The software updates for tvOS 18 include new features such as InSight, which will display information about actors, characters and music from AppleTV+ movies and shows on the screen in real time.

“Users can easily select an actor to view their background and filmography page, or quickly view the song playing in a scene and add it to their Apple Music playlist,” says Apple.

“Viewers can also see InSight information on their iPhone when using it as an Apple TV remote.”

Enhanced Dialogue uses machine learning and computer audio to deliver greater vocal clarity against music, action and background noise, and can be used when listening through secondary devices such as AirPods and when playing supported content on iPhone and iPad.

With iOS 18, the Home app will be enhanced to introduce guest access, “providing users with convenient ways to give guests control over locks, garage doors, and security systems … scheduling individualized or timed access to the home with smart locks … and viewing guest activity history” .

AirPods Pro users will have multiple ways to interact with Siri, including privately answering prompts by simply nodding your head for yes or shaking your head for no.

“Powered by machine learning on the H2 chip, Siri Interactions let users answer or end calls, interact with messages, manage notifications, and much more—all without speaking,” says Apple.

“We design our home products to improve users’ everyday lives, and our latest updates reinforce that goal by providing even more convenience and connectivity,” said Stan Ng, Apple’s vice president of Apple Watch, Audio, Health and Home Product Marketing.

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