iOS 18: Here are the new AI features in the works

It looks like 2024 will be the “Year of AI” for Apple, with big updates planned for iOS 18 and more. Rumors – and Tim Cook himself – make it clear that new AI features for Apple platforms are in the works. Here's everything we know about the ways Apple is exploring AI features…

iOS 18: New AI features in the works

There have been a number of rumors about different AI features working within Apple. Bloomberg It was reported that Apple believes iOS 18 will be one of the “biggest iOS updates” ever, headlined by a number of new AI features.

Mark Gurman reported last July that Apple had created its own large language model (LLM) system, which it called AppleGPT. The project uses a framework called “Ajax” that Apple began creating in 2022 to anchor various machine learning projects on a common foundation. This Ajax framework will serve as the foundation for Apple's upcoming AI features across all of its platforms.

9to5Mac I found evidence of Apple working on new AI and large language modeling technology in iOS 17.4. We reported that Apple is relying on OpenAI's ChatGPT API for internal testing to help develop its AI models.

Bloomberg It stated that Apple's iOS 18 features will be powered by a large language model that is “entirely on-device,” which provides a number of privacy and speed benefits.

Here are some rumors about new AI features coming to iOS 18:

  • A new version of Siri is smarter and relies on large language modeling technology, similar to platforms like ChatGPT and Google's Gemini.
  • New AI features for Apple Music let users automatically create playlists.
  • AI integration into Pages, Keynote, and Numbers for summarization, content creation, and more.
  • Xcode AI features that can complete blocks of code, help test apps, and more.
  • An upgraded version of Spotlight Search is powered by generative AI and can perform more complex tasks.
  • AI-powered health coaching built into Apple Health and Apple Watch.
  • New AI features for the Messages app that can auto-complete messages, answer questions, and summarize incoming text messages.
  • For Safari, Apple is reportedly preparing new AI-powered summarization tools as well as a new Web Eraser feature.
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Apple AI frameworks

Did you know that Apple has already launched a number of powerful AI frameworks and models? Here's a summary of that:

Apple AI announcements coming this year

Apple iOS 18 Plans |  Tim Cook speaks at Apple Park

During Apple's recent earnings call, Tim Cook gave a rare teaser of the future product announcement. According to Cook, Apple is spending “a tremendous amount of time and effort” on AI technologies, and the company is “excited to share details of our ongoing work in this area later this year.”

It's very rare for Cook to even remotely hint at Apple's plans for future product announcements. Why did he do that this time? This is likely to ease the concerns of investors and analysts who worry that Apple is falling behind the likes of OpenAI, Google and Microsoft. Whether or not the teaser is enough to allay those fears until the product is actually announced remains to be seen.

Also during a recent earnings call, Cook touted the advantages Apple has that will set its AI apart from the competition:

“We believe in the transformative power and promise of AI, and believe we have advantages that will set us apart in this new era, including Apple's unique combination of seamless integration between hardware, software and services, leading Apple Silicon with our industry-leading neural solutions, and our unwavering focus on Privacy, which underpins everything we create.

Partnership with Google? Or unlock artificial intelligence?

In a surprising development, Bloomberg he have Apple reported It is currently in active negotiations with Google regarding the possibility of licensing Gemini, Google's suite of generative AI models. The report states that Apple is specifically looking to partner on cloud-based generative AI models.

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In this scenario, Apple would rely on a partner like Google for its cloud-based features. Other features will still be supported on the device by Apple's own technology.

In theory, the generative AI features under discussion will be integrated into Siri and other apps. Meanwhile, new AI capabilities based on Apple's home-grown models will remain built into the operating system. People familiar with the matter said they will focus on proactively providing users with information and performing tasks on their behalf in the background.

While Apple is said to be in “active negotiations” for this partnership with Google, the company has also reportedly been in talks with OpenAI as well.

In fact, recently, it was reported that Apple has resumed talks with OpenAI about a partnership. According to reports, Apple will use OpenAI technology to power its AI-based chatbot in iOS 18.

It is contained

At this point, the question is which of the many rumors will come to fruition this year.

I'd be surprised if all the rumored AI features are ready this year. My assumption is that Apple is working on all of these things (and more), but will trim down the final list of features included in iOS 18. Features that don't get cut will likely come in a later update to iOS 18 or with iOS 19 in 2025.

Apple has officially scheduled WWDC for June 10 of this year, and this is where we expect the bulk of its AI announcements to be made.

Where would you like to see Apple turn its attention to new AI features this year? Let us know in the comments.

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