Tuesday, June 25, 2024

Elon Musk threatens to ban Apple devices from his companies after new AI deal

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Apple has been approached for comment in response to Mr Musk’s claims.

The tech giant announced a plethora of new AI features for its iOS operating system on Monday as it seeks to show it has an answer to rival Google’s AI tools.

At its annual Worldwide Developer Conference, Tim Cook, Apple’s chief executive, said the new AI products – which he dubbed “Apple Intelligence” – were “the next big step” for the technology giant.

“We’re thrilled to introduce a new chapter in Apple innovation. Apple Intelligence will transform what users can do with our products,” Mr Cook said.

The California company has been under pressure to show off its AI advances after the launch of ChatGPT, a digital chatbot developed by Silicon Valley start-up OpenAI that has caused a groundswell of interest in the technology and a race to launch powerful AI products.

Apple has also been grappling with slowing iPhone sales, recording a 10.5pc fall in smartphone revenues in the first three months of the year.

Google, meanwhile, has launched its own AI tools using its Gemini chatbot, which it has added to its rival Android smartphone operating system.

Siri, Apple’s digital voice assistant, will be able to control more features from within apps for the first time, with Apple giving users the option of adding OpenAI’s ChatGPT technology to its 13-year-old voice assistant to answer more complex requests for free.

On the company’s iPhones, Macbooks and iPads, users will be offered a host of tools powered by AI that can generate text – including entire blog posts – and email “Smart Replies” that can quickly respond to inbox queries.

Its new iOS 18 smartphone software will come with AI-powered technology that can generate customised emojis or create synthetic artworks.

On top of its AI announcements, Apple revealed it is seeking to put an end to mobile “not spots” by giving iPhone users the ability to send text messages via satellite even when they do not have any phone signal.

The tech giant announced on Monday that iPhone users will soon be able to send iMessages and standard text messages by beaming signals to passing satellites, challenging billionaire Elon Musk’s Starlink, which is developing a competing system.

Apple first launched the ability to send “Emergency SOS” text messages over satellite in 2022, and it is currently available in the UK, but the offering was limited to alerts to first responders, intended for adventurers in trouble.

The new version of the technology will allow iPhone users to send everyday messages via satellite, potentially overcoming mobile blackspots around the world. The service will initially launch in the US later this year.

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