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Apple takes personal approach with new AI platform

Apple Intelligence
Apple is releasing its new Apple Intelligence AI platform.

Apple's push into generative artificial intelligence is underway.

The tech giant unveiled a proprietary AI system, called Apple Intelligence, that is focused on the needs of individual users. Described as a "personal intelligence" system for iPhone, iPad and Mac device platforms. Apple said the new platform combines generative AI with “personal context” to deliver "useful and relevant" capabilities.

Specific capabilities include using natural language to search for specific photos, such as "skateboarding in a tie-dye shirt" or "stickers on face." Search in videos now offers the ability to find specific moments in clips so users can go right to the relevant segment. 

In addition, a new clean up tool can identify and remove distracting objects in the background of a photo without accidentally altering the subject.

"We’re thrilled to introduce a new chapter in Apple innovation," said Apple CEO Tim Cook. "Apple Intelligence will transform what users can do with our products — and what our products can do for our users. 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. This is AI as only Apple can deliver it, and we can’t wait for users to experience what it can do."

With a Memories feature, users can create the story they want to see by simply typing a description. Using language and image understanding, Apple Intelligence will pick out the best photos and videos based on the description, craft a storyline with chapters based on themes identified from the photos and arrange them into a movie with its own narrative arc. 

Users will also receive song suggestions to match their memory from Apple Music. They can also create an original "Genmoji" emoji. By typing a description or sharing a photo, their Genmoji appears, along with additional options. 

Equipped with richer language-understanding capabilities, Apple says its Siri voice assistant will become more natural, more contextually relevant, and more personal. It can follow along if users stumble over words and maintain context from one request to the next. 

Other new features of Apple Intelligence include AI-enabled rewriting, summarizing and proofreading text, as well as automatically prioritizing, summarizing and responding to emails and having chat notifications prioritized and summarized with AI.

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In addition, an Image Playground tool enables users to create images in seconds, choosing from the three styles of Animation, Illustration or Sketch. The tool is built into apps including Messages and available as a dedicated app.

Apple Intelligence uses on-device processing, and many of the models that support it run entirely on the device. To run more complex requests that require more processing power, a secure Private Cloud Compute capability extends the privacy and security of Apple devices into the cloud to gain access to more intelligence running on larger, server-based models for more complex requests. 

Apple is also integrating ChatGPT access into iOS 18, iPadOS 18 and macOS Sequoia, including its image- and document-understanding capabilities, without needing to jump between tools.

Users will be able to have access to ChatGPT for free without creating an account, and ChatGPT subscribers can connect their accounts and access paid features directly from Apple experiences.

Apple Intelligence is free for users and will be available in beta as part of iOS18, iPadOS18 and macOS Sequoia in fall 2024 in English. Some features, software platforms and additional languages will roll out over the course of the next year. Apple Intelligence will be available on iPhone 15 Pro, iPhone 15 Pro Max, and iPad and Mac with M1 and later, with Siri and device language set to U.S. English.


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