Apple is preparing to spend big to catch up in generative AI, with the company preparing to hire more people in the field.
The revelation came courtesy of comments by CEO Tim Cook, via BBC, reiterating that the company did not want to follow the rest of the industry in conducting mass layoffs. Cook called such action a “last resort.”
BBC says the CEO told the PA news agency that Apple was looking to hire specifically in the AI field:
“We’re hiring in that area, yes, and so I do expect [investment] to increase.”
The news was welcomed by Culture Secretary Michelle Donelan:
“Apple’s ongoing investment in brilliant British talent highlights our global credentials as both an AI and technology superpower,” she wrote on X.
The comments by Cook also come at a time when Apple is deeply concerned about recent actions taken by the UK government. The government passed the Online Safety Bill which initially targeted strong encryption. Apple was one of several companies that threatened to pull its services out of the UK if the bill passed. While it did ultimately pass, lawmakers significantly watered down the portion that would have required compromising encryption at the very last minute.
One can’t help but wonder if Cook’s comments are a little bit of dangling the proverbial carrot in front of the UK, emphasizing what a valuable partner Apple can be to the country — as long as it does not pass laws that threaten the safety, privacy, and security of users around the world.