Apple CEO Optimistic About Future Generative AI Investments

Apple's emerging generative AI efforts could offset rocky second quarter

Ben Wodecki, Jr. Editor

May 3, 2024

2 Min Read
A man in glasses stood in front of a large black and white Apple logo
Justin Sullivan/Getty Images

Despite experiencing a decline in revenue and iPhone sales during a rocky second quarter, Apple's emerging generative AI efforts could provide a much-needed boost.

During its May 2 earnings call, Apple reported quarterly revenue of $90.8 billion, a 4% decrease from last year. iPhone revenue was also down by 10% to $46 billion.

While Apple is yet to launch a generative AI solution like rival tech firms, the emerging technology looks set to have a sizable impact on the company.

During the earnings call, Tim Cook, Apple’s CEO, said the company will be making “significant investments” in generative AI in the next quarter and that the company “continue[s] to feel very bullish about our opportunity in generative AI.”

Cook said that Apple has advantages to differentiate it from other tech firms building AI solutions, including its “unique combination of seamless hardware, software and services integration, groundbreaking Apple Silicon with industry-leading neural engines and unwavering focus on privacy.”

CEO Cook described Apple’s upcoming annual WWDC event, where the company traditionally reveals new products, as “incredible.”

Forrester analyst Thomas Husson said to expect “significant generative AI announcements” from Apple at the June event.

Related:6 Latest AI Models from Meta, OpenAI, Apple and More

“It’s likely that a new neural engine on-device chip, coupled with new features in iOS 18, will enable developers to create differentiated new consumer experiences for the next generation of iPhone 16 signature devices which will be released at the end of Q3 2024,” Husson said.

Unlike Microsoft and Google, Apple has been quietly working on AI.

Reports of projects sporadically surfaced over the past 12 months, including news that the company is working on its own web application-based chatbot service called Apple GPT.

In February, Apple shuttered its decade-long electric vehicle project, Titan, to focus on expanding its generative AI efforts.

One area of AI where Apple has made public strides is in the PC space. Recent Omdia research crowned Apple as a leader in the AI PC sector for creative applications. Cook claimed Apple’s MacBook Air was the “best consumer laptop for AI” during its earning call.

Apple only dipped its toes into open source AI last week through the launch of OpenELM, a small language model that can power applications like chatbots.

The only publicly acknowledged AI effort before OpenELM was a paper covering a multimodal model, MM1, and a suite of developer tools for running models on Apple’s Silicon processor architecture, MLX.

Related:Apple Launches First Multimodal AI Model

“Apple’s resolve to stay away from AI hype is likely going to be dented as it’s beginning to look like the odd one out, “said Dipanjan Chatterjee, Forrester vice president and principal analyst. “We may hear more about AI and generative AI soon.”

Read more about:

ChatGPT / Generative AI

About the Author(s)

Ben Wodecki

Jr. Editor

Ben Wodecki is the Jr. Editor of AI Business, covering a wide range of AI content. Ben joined the team in March 2021 as assistant editor and was promoted to Jr. Editor. He has written for The New Statesman, Intellectual Property Magazine, and The Telegraph India, among others. He holds an MSc in Digital Journalism from Middlesex University.

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