What you need to know
- A new report claims Apple is working on its own ChatGPT alternative.
- The project is codenamed Ajax, and is utilized internally to help Apple prototype products.
- Apple employees are using it as a replacement to Bing Chat and Google Bard.
- Rumors suggest Apple could make a big AI-related announcement next year.
This year has been all about generative AI. It started late last year with the launch of OpenAI's ChatGPT 3.5 technology, which revolutionized what generative AI could do. Shortly after, in February 2023, Microsoft took the wraps off its own Bing Chat AI copilot, based on the newer ChatGPT 4.0 technology.
Since then, Microsoft has made it a primary mission to bring generative AI technology to as many of its products as possible, including Microsoft Office, GitHub, and Windows 11. Google has been hot on their heels with the introduction of Bard, a similar generative AI designed to help with internet searches.
With all of that happening, Apple has remained suspiciously absent in the recent wave of AI product announcements, but a new report from Bloomberg's Mark Gurman claims that Apple is indeed working on its own version of Bing Chat and Google Bard, based on its own large-language model internally called "Ajax."
Ajax is reportedly built on Google Jax, a machine learning framework from Google, and uses Google Cloud to power the large-language model. Apple had briefly considered partnering with OpenAI, but ultimately decided against it.
So far, Ajax is being used as an internal Apple tool that helps employees prototype products, but Gurman claims Apple is currently trying to figure out a way to bring it to market for consumers. Sources say they believe Apple is planning to make a big announcement in the AI space sometime next year, likely related to generative AI.
It was only a matter of time before Apple introduced its own ChatGPT competitor, after Microsoft and Google both showed how generative AI will enhance PCs and smartphones. Apple has no choice but to respond with its own AI product, otherwise the iPhone and Mac will get left behind in AI functionality.
Gurman points out that recent Apple job listings point towards the company hiring people who are familiar with generative AI technology, which further suggests the company is planning to launch its own ChatGPT competitor at some point.
With Microsoft and Google already shipping generative AI products, Apple has no choice but to play catchup in this segment of the market. But will Apple's version be better than the competition? Only time will tell.
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