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Apple announces new AI system Apple Intelligence in partnership with OpenAI

Apple Intelligence will be the iPhone maker’s on-device AI system and is set to be partially powered by ChatGPT, prompting criticism by Elon Musk and other competitors

By Livia Giannotti

Tim Cook announced that Apple is expanding its integration of generative AI into various products and services and is teaming up with ChatGPT maker OpenAI to boost some of its platforms. The news comes after the company has lagged behind other major tech firms in shifting to AI and has received a lukewarm welcome from other tech players including Elon Musk and Samsung.

Apple Intelligence is the new AI system by Apple
Apple Intelligence will be available on Apple products and platforms starting this autumn. (Photo: Adrian Tusar / Shutterstock)

Cook spoke at Apple’s annual worldwide developer conference (WWDC) on Monday in Cupertino, California, where he introduced the company’s new AI system, Apple Intelligence. It will be integrated into iPhone, iPad, and Mac and aims to add generative-AI-assisted features “to understand and create language and images, take action across apps, and draw from personal context to simplify and accelerate everyday tasks,” Apple said in a statement.

For example, Apple Intelligence will be able to summarise, proofread or rewrite texts from virtually any app and generate images or emojis. As part of this shift to generative AI, Apple will also integrate ChatGPT technology into its voice assistant bot Siri, AI-powered writing assistant Writing Tools, and new AI image generator Compose.

“AI has to understand you and be grounded in your personal context like your routine, your relationships, your communications and more. It’s beyond artificial intelligence. It’s personal intelligence,” Cook said at the conference.

Apple Intelligence will be available starting this autumn and additional features and language options will be added over the next year.

Elon Musk calls Apple Intelligence ‘creepy spyware’

However, only hours after the announcement, Apple Intelligence has already been criticised by fellow tech players including Elon Musk over privacy and ethical concerns around AI.

After Cook posted about the newly introduced AI system on X, Elon Musk replied to his post writing “Don’t want it. Either stop this creepy spyware or all Apple devices will be banned from the premises of my companies.” The owner of Tesla, SpaceX and X then posted: “It’s patently absurd that Apple isn’t smart enough to make their own AI, yet is somehow capable of ensuring that OpenAI will protect your security & privacy! Apple has no clue what’s actually going on once they hand your data over to OpenAI. They’re selling you down the river.”

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It’s not the first time Musk has expressed concerns and disagreement with OpenAI’s ventures. After being part of the firm’s founding team, Musk filed a lawsuit against it in March 2024, claiming the company has abandoned its ethics and safety principles for profit.

During the conference on Monday, Cook addressed privacy concerns and introduced Apple’s secure cloud system “designed specifically for private AI processing”, Private Cloud Compute. This system aims to keep user data private and inaccessible to anyone other than the user.

Cook said: “Our unique approach combines generative AI with a user’s personal context to deliver truly helpful intelligence. And it can access that information in a completely private and secure way to help users do the things that matter most to them.”

How are Apple’s competitors integrating AI?

Apple’s extensive integration of AI has been long awaited inside and outside the industry, especially as Google and Microsoft – two of the company’s biggest competitors – have launched their own generative AI features in recent years, such as Google AI, Google’s Gemini and Microsoft’s Copilot bots. 

Apple’s rival Samsung, which introduced Galaxy AI for on-device assistance earlier this year, mocked Apple Intelligence for taking so long to release their AI system. The South Korean company tweeted: “Adding ‘Apple’ doesn’t make it new or groundbreaking. Welcome to AI”.

Read more: Meta training AI products through user data breaks European law, claim activists

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