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Business News/ Technology / News/  Apple accelerates AI plans with custom chip-powered data centers: Report

Apple accelerates AI plans with custom chip-powered data centers: Report

Apple reportedly plans to integrate AI into its products using custom processors in cloud-computing servers. This shift signifies a move towards more complex AI tasks. The strategy balances user privacy with powerful functionality.

For representation purposes only. (Apple)Premium
For representation purposes only. (Apple)

Apple reportedly plans to roll out new artificial intelligence (AI) features this year, leveraging data centers with its own custom-designed processors. This strategy is part of Apple's broader push to integrate AI into its product lineup. 

Gadgets360 reported that as per the sources familiar with the matter, the tech giant intends to install high-performance chips in its cloud-computing servers to handle advanced AI tasks, while simpler functions will be processed on devices like iPhones, iPads, and Macs.

This approach aligns with Apple's generative AI ambitions, an area where it is trailing competitors. The technology powering tools like ChatGPT has driven the AI surge, prompting Apple to speed up its own initiatives. At its upcoming Worldwide Developers Conference on June 10, the company is expected to outline its ambitious AI strategy.

Reportedly, Apple's cloud-based AI operations will initially utilize its M2 Ultra chips, which debuted in the Mac Pro and Mac Studio, with future iterations incorporating the M4 chip. This shift from Apple's traditional emphasis on on-device processing represents a new direction, suggesting a move toward more complex AI tasks that require cloud computing.

Moreover, the report highlights that these cloud-based AI capabilities will support features like summarizing news articles and creating detailed responses to emails, while simpler tasks such as summarizing missed iPhone notifications will be handled by device-based processors. Apple's AI-driven services are set to roll out with iOS 18 this fall, aiming to balance user privacy with powerful AI functionality. The company is confident that its Secure Enclave approach can maintain data security.

While Apple initially plans to use its own data centers, it could eventually turn to external facilities, similar to its current iCloud services. Apple's chief financial officer, Luca Maestri, hinted at this strategy on a recent earnings call, noting that a mix of in-house and third-party resources has served the company well.

The tech giant is investing heavily in its AI infrastructure, spending hundreds of millions of dollars on its cloud-based initiative over the past three years. However, it still faces gaps in its offerings, and has been in discussions with Alphabet's Google and OpenAI about integrating chatbots into the iPhone and iPad.

CEO Tim Cook highlighted Apple's unique approach to AI during the company's earnings call, emphasizing the benefits of Apple's seamless hardware, software, and services integration. Although Cook refrained from detailing specific plans, he underlined Apple's focus on privacy, suggesting that it would be a key differentiator as the company embraces AI.



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Published: 10 May 2024, 04:19 PM IST
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