Apple in talks to bring Google's Gemini AI to iPhone: report

AFP , Monday 18 Mar 2024

Apple is in advanced negotiations with Google to adopt its powerful Gemini AI models for the iPhone, Bloomberg reported on Monday.

iPhone 15
File Photo: The Apple iPhone 15 series is displayed for sale at The Grove Apple retail store on release day in Los Angeles, California on September 22, 2023. AFP

The move, if confirmed and resulting in a deal, would answer one of the big questions about the iPhone-maker's AI strategy, which has been criticized as lagging its tech giant rivals.

Google's share price soared by well over six percent on the news. Apple's was up by as much as 2.5 percent.

According to Bloomberg, Apple is seeking to partner with Google for its next iOS operating system release and will likely feature on its next iPhone, expected later this year.

Apple and Google are already locked in a search engine partnership that sees Google pay Apple tens of billions of dollars every year to give the search engine a prominent place on the iPhone.

That long-running search engine deal is facing a historic lawsuit from the US Department of Justice for alleged violations of antitrust law.

Bloomberg reported that Apple had also held talks with OpenAI, the creator of ChatGPT, to partner on generative AI, without providing more details.

Apple CEO Tim Cook last month said there would be major updates in store on the AI front, though some observers may be disappointed that the company is teaming up with others to deliver on AI.

"For Google, any hypothetical deal with Apple could mean they essentially 'own' generative AI on mobile devices (Android + iOS)," said Colin Sebastian, an analyst at Baird.

"It also means Apple may not be in a position to catch-up to GenAI leaders, at least not in the next generation of devices," he added.

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