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Apple Investing $1 Billion a Year to Catch Up on Generative AI

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Apple is now spending around $1 billion per year to develop its own generative AI capabilities, says Bloomberg.

This massive investment comes as Apple plays catch-up to competitors like Google, Microsoft, and Amazon, who have already released new AI products and features.

Apple products like your iPhone use AI to do many things. But the company doesn’t have a dedicated generative AI product like ChatGPT yet.

So far, Apple has built its own large language model known as Ajax. And there are rumors it has an internal chatbot known as Apple GPT.

According to the reporting, Apple might be looking to incorporate AI into Siri, Messages, and Apple Music to start.

Why It Matters

Apple’s sheer size and impact make any AI moves from the company worth paying attention to.

Connecting the Dots

On Episode 70 of The Marketing AI Show, Marketing AI Institute founder and CEO Paul Roetzer unpacked what’s going on with Apple and AI for me.

  1. Apple is an AI powerhouse, even if they don’t talk about it. AI is integral to how they build new products. There are literally hundreds of AI-powered features in iPhone, iPad, Apple Watch, and other products. They just don’t talk up their AI capabilities nearly as much as other major players.
  2. But they definitely got caught by surprise with generative AI. They weren’t alone. Most other companies did, too. “I’m still shocked by how unprepared Google and Apple and these other companies were for the ChatGPT moment,” says Roetzer.
  3. Apple’s obvious AI play is Siri. Roetzer says he’s not sure anything else matters. AI voice assistants have gotten good—and show off what Siri should have been. Every single Apple product would benefit from a truly AI-powered Siri that was capable of wide-ranging, natural language conversation. “If they don’t make Siri smarter, it’s just one of the great misses in business history,” he says.

What to Do About It

Keep an eye on your iPhone. Given Apple’s reach, any new and powerful AI features rolling out to popular devices will have a big, immediate impact on consumer life.

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