Now it looks like Apple is finally doing something about it. Apple is the latest of many companies to start adding generative AI to products like Siri. Cupertino’s plans are with his 9to5Mac, which says it’s currently testing “Siri Natural Language Generation.” It comes into effect with his tvOS 16.4 Beta, the latest version of the Apple TV operating system. The project is reportedly codenamed Bobcat and will eventually be rolled out across Apple’s operating systems. The report says code for this feature exists in his Mac, iPhone, iPad, and HomePod. In its current form, it seems to be used only by Siri to tell jokes. Apple held its annual AI conference last month to help the company’s engineers better understand its AI products. According to the newspaper, the Siri team is attending events to test “speech generation concepts every week.”
Apple’s customers are known to be extremely loyal. It also means that we go to great lengths to protect Apple’s practices and products. Despite their dedication, most of us admit to fervently hating Siri, even though we love our iPhones and MacBooks. The company’s voice-based assistant hasn’t been particularly helpful for most people, even though it’s been around for over a decade. Just like the seemingly forgotten Apple product iTunes.
Siri is based on a template database rather than a large language model. Therefore, the transition to generative languages will be massive. However, no matter what Apple comes up with, ChatGPT is nothing like it. Bloomberg’s Mark Garman, known for his accurate coverage of Apple, recently denied that the company was developing a chatbot. Whatever Apple comes up with seems to be dipping its toes in the pool for now. This week alone, Google showed AI with Google Docs and Gmail, Microsoft added ChatGPT to Edge, and Mark Zuckerberg announced that his Meta is also focusing on AI.
The AI arms race is on, and given the abundance of resources, Apple has a good chance of staying competitive. But given that Google and Microsoft are rapidly starting to incorporate it into their products, Apple is clearly lagging behind. It can take a long time to ship products with generative AI.