Apple May Tap Google’s Gemini for iPhone AI

Apple may be cozy up to Google even more, with reported talks to use Gemini to power generative AI on the iPhone....
Apple May Tap Google’s Gemini for iPhone AI
Written by Matt Milano
  • Apple may cozy up to Google even more, with the company reportedly in talks to use Gemini to power generative AI on the iPhone.

    Apple and Google already have a lucrative search deal that makes Google the default option on Apple devices, a deal that has drawn significant scrutiny in Google’s antitrust trial. According to a new report by Bloomberg, Apple may be looking to use Google’s Gemini to help it catch up in the generative AI market.

    Despite jumping to an early lead in AI assistants with Siri, Apple’s AI efforts have fallen far behind those of its rivals, with Microsoft and Google delivering options that far exceed Siri’s capabilities. Apple has been working to catch up, reassigning many of the engineers that were working on its defunct Project Titan to its AI division.

    Analysts see the deal as a win-win for both companies.

    “What matters here is that Apple may receive or retain some payment from Google for the privilege, especially if it helps Google keep more search revenue,” analysts at Melius Research said in an investors’ note seen by CBS News. “For Google, it would be a reputational win versus Microsoft and OpenAI after a series of missteps in launching reliable AI products.”

    Despite the reports, there are many questions left unanswered. For example, Apple recently acquired DarwinAI to bolster its AI development efforts. As we pointed out in our coverage, Apple has a long history of leveraging smaller acquisitions to help build its products and services. If Apple plans to use Google’s AI model, why purchase an AI company whose IP could be used for that purpose? Or was the DarwinAI purchase purely to bring on experts to help with Apple’s goal of integrating an established platform?

    Another major question revolves around Apple’s claim of protecting user privacy. It’s widely believed that one of Apple’s biggest challenges in the AI game is its insistence on providing on-device options, rather than the cloud-based options its competitors are offering, since an on-device option would allow a user more control over their data.

    Partnering with Google and bundling Gemini would likely involve a host of privacy challenges, especially with something as data-intensive as generative AI. Privacy is one of the biggest issues and unsolved challenges with the tech. Apple will certainly have its hands full balancing those concerns if a deal moves forward, especially when relying on a company that has a long history of not respecting user privacy.

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