During a call with analysts following the announcement of the company’s fiscal first-quarter earnings, Apple CEO Tim Cook hinted at the possibility of an artificial intelligence (AI) announcement later in the year.
Although Cook’s comments on Thursday lacked specific details, they suggested Apple’s intention to enter the competitive arena against tech giants like Microsoft, Google, Amazon, OpenAI, and others. The focus appears to be on developing advanced AI models capable of generating both text and images.
“In our forward-looking strategy, we remain committed to investing in various technologies that will play a pivotal role in shaping the future,” stated Cook during a call with analysts. “This commitment extends to artificial intelligence, where we dedicate significant time and effort. We eagerly anticipate unveiling the specifics of our continuous endeavors in that domain later this year.”
The spotlight on generative AI intensified among technology firms and investors in 2022, particularly following the launch of OpenAI’s ChatGPT and notable advancements in image generators. Despite not unveiling an advanced AI model in the previous year, Apple has a history of investing in machine learning technology within its chips and software. This technology enables functions such as recognizing individuals or pets within photographs.
Traditionally, Apple reveals its latest software developments at its annual developer’s conference, WWDC, held in June. In the previous year, the company introduced an autocorrect feature for the iPhone keyboard, employing a transformer-based language model, akin to the technology underlying GPT. Interestingly, during the presentation, Apple opted for the term “machine learning” over the more commonly used phrase “artificial intelligence.”
“I believe there’s a significant opportunity for Apple in the realm of Gen AI and AI, but I won’t delve into specifics at this point to avoid getting ahead of myself,” stated Cook.