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Apple brings ChatGPT to iPhones and Siri in AI overhaul

Apple is to boost its Siri voice assistant and operating systems with OpenAI’s ChatGPT as it seeks to catch up in the AI race.

The iPhone maker announced the Siri makeover along with a number of other new features at its annual developers show on Monday.

It is part of a new personalised AI system – called “Apple Intelligence” – that aims to offer users a way to navigate Apple devices more easily.

Updates to its iPhone and Mac operating systems will allow access to ChatGPT through a partnership with developer OpenAI.

ChatGPT can also be used to boost other tools, including text and content generation. The test version will become available in the autumn.

Tim Cook, Apple chief executive, said the move would bring his company’s products “to new heights” as he opened the Worldwide Developers Conference at the tech giant’s headquarters in Cupertino, California.

The announcement was not welcomed by all. Elon Musk, the owner of Tesla and Twitter/X, threatened to ban iPhones from his companies due to “data security”.

“Apple has no clue what’s actually going on once they hand your data over to OpenAI,” Mr Musk said on X. “They’re selling you down the river.”

Apple has faced pressure to introduce new AI features to its products after the rapid rise of rivals who have adopted the technology.

After it was usurped by Microsoft as the world’s most valuable company in January, Apple was overtaken again by Nvidia in early June.

Ben Wood, chief analyst at CCS Insight, said that while Apple’s new personal AI system “should help placate nervous investors”, its ChatGPT integration may reveal and create deeper problems for the firm.

“Arguably this sees Apple admitting its limitations given ChatGPT will kick in at a point where Siri is no longer able to help a user,” he told the BBC.

Apple has been largely absent in the avalanche of AI products released by tech firms in recent months.

Mr Cook told investors in 2023 that the company would approach the tech with care. On Monday, those plans were finally laid out.

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