Why Apple Is Better off Using Its Own LLM Model Rather than Relying on Others

Apple is ready to host its annual Worldwide Developers Conference (WWDC) this month, starting June 10. This time, we would see Apple making some bold changes to its iPhone operating system, by introducing an array of Generative AI features on iPhones. While I’m excited to see Apple finally making it to the AI league, there’s one thing that’s bothering me. And, that’s the rumor that despite all the AI features, there won’t be any chatbot from the company to compete with rivals. If you’re an Apple superfan like me, I know the concern is mutual.

The giant is also planning to offer AI services through the cloud. Ever since I’ve come across reports that Apple is seeking a partnership with OpenAI and that Apple’s proprietary chatbot will still be missing, I’ve been disheartened. It sounds like, despite some AI-inspired additions, Apple’s generative AI technology isn’t ready to compete with ChatGPT or Gemini. 

Rather than introducing a proprietary chatbot, Apple is planning to revamp Siri to catch up to its AI competitors. It would be fantastic to see Siri getting a brain transplant and breathing a new life as the intelligent Siri 2.0 with some exciting capabilities in iOS 18. Siri may become somewhat like ChatGPT, but I want a solid Apple’s ChatGPT equivalent or “iChat” as I like to call it. I know it’s unlikely, but I still dream of Apple using its own AI model instead of relying on OpenAI. Hear me out why!

Become a Major Player in the AI League

iOS 18 Ai features Pro iPhones
Image Courtesy: Mohit Singh/Beebom

Generative AI saw a boom in 2023. Some big names like Google, Microsoft, and Amazon have already developed cutting-edge AI models that offer ChatGPT-like experiences. We’re in the middle of 2024 and it’s high time for Apple to ditch the backseat, take control of the steering wheel, and push the accelerator to enter the AI race like a boss. I know Apple is unapologetically slow in terms of coming up with the new changes, but when it does, it comes with the best implementation.

With Apple teamed up with OpenAI to integrate the startup’s technology into iOS 18, the iconic Apple experience would be missing. Apple’s homegrown AI features and the OpenAI partnership could be fruitful in the short term. It will help the Cupertino tech giant to enter the AI league this year. However, this won’t be a smart approach for the future. If Apple wants to become an unruled player in the AI space, they have to ditch the partnership approach and build a chatbot of its own.

Enhanced User Experience Across the Apple Ecosystem

Apple’s biggest strength lies in its ecosystem, where software and services work seamlessly across devices. With an Apple chatbot, I wish to see some new features and enhanced capabilities across my connected Apple devices. The chatbot could be a central hub for user interactions, providing a more personalized experience across Apple devices where you’ve signed in with the same Apple ID.

IOS 18 ai features
Image Courtesy: Mohit Singh

Apple could integrate its chatbot with various services like Apple TV+, Apple Music, and Apple Arcade, for a better user experience. For instance, the chatbot could deliver personalized music recommendations, help find what content to watch, or provide interesting game suggestions.

I crave an Apple AI chatbot that can suggest Apple TV shows based on my preferences, sync reminders between my iPhone and iPad, and automatically merge screenshots on my iPhone and AirDrop them to my Mac. With a well-designed sophisticated chatbot, Apple can further enhance the already fantastic connectivity of its ecosystem, making it even more indispensable to users. Of course, Apple might achieve this by integrating a third-party platform, but won’t it lack that right-at-home feel that Apple users are fond of? It will, definitely.

Privacy concerns

One of the major reasons why I want Apple to use its own AI model is privacy concerns. All the popular chatbots, be it OpenAI or Google, store all your activity data. OpenAI asks for the user’s consent before storing the data, and Google doesn’t even bother to do that. Also, Google stores all your interactions and activities for up to 18 months and uses them to train and improve their models. In addition, your OpenAI and Gemini chats are processed by human reviewers. They can view all your conversations and use them to improve their models, by default. This raises the risk of data breach of confidential data. 

Why Apple Is Better off Using Its Own LLM Model Rather than Relying on Others

In the past, we’ve seen how chatbot mishaps have created controversies for some top companies like Google. Back in February 2024, Google Gemini chats were appearing in search results. Last year, Samsung banned ChatGPT for its employees as the chatbot was leaking sensitive data about the company. Since then, there have been a lot of concerns and questions over how AI companies may put our digital privacy at risk.

More recently, another controversy erupted when OpenAI was found using a voice for its chatbot that was eerily similar to the actress Scarlett Johansson without her consent. OpenAI, which is seen as the most likely Apple partner for AI features, has seen itself embroiled in several controversies lately. This could tarnish Apple’s reputation, which it has acquired over the years.

Talking about Apple, it’s known for its strict guidelines to protect users’ privacy, which is crucial to winning consumers’ trust. It would be fantastic if Apple could develop its own AI chatbot with the same privacy as the core, like other Apple products. This would give Apple an edge over its competitors who have been criticized for their data practices. When Apple comes up with a privacy-focused chatbot, I can be relaxed that all my interactions are secured and none of my personal data is being exploited. If you’re also a privacy-conscious consumer, this would surely attract you.

Aren’t these reasons more than enough to see a secure and intelligent Apple chatbot? Well, I’m a loyal Apple user and a privacy-conscious customer for whom a secure experience matters the most. I can put everything else to a secondary level.

I think it’s the right time for Apple to release its own chatbot and use the home-grown LLM. By aligning Generative AI with its goals of maintaining user privacy and an interconnected ecosystem, Apple can come up with its own AI model that can not only meet but exceed user expectations. Now that I’ve seen OpenAI’s GPT-4o and  Google Gemini 1.5 Pro, the Apple lover in me is dying to see an Apple ChatGPT equivalent that boasts some miraculous powers. I hope you’re listening, Apple!

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