Artificial Intelligence and DaaS Tech Perspectives

Apple Enters a New Era

Unveiling Apple Intelligence and Demonstrating How AI Will Disrupt Our Lives
Pinterest LinkedIn Tumblr

On June 10, 2024, Apple entered a new era of intelligence. At their annual Worldwide Developers Conference (#WWDC24), Apple unveiled how artificial intelligence will be embedded into their ecosystem and announced several enhanced features for iOS, iPadOS, and MacOS. These new smarter features will empower users through the use of AI.

This year’s WWDC marks a pivotal moment for Apple, being one of the most significant events in recent years. Since the introduction of the iPhone, the iPad, and the Apple watch, Apple has been the undisputable leader in terms of the user experience, and dominated sales of smartphones, tablets and smartwatches in value terms.

Over the last 17 years, Apple has not faced any other disruptive technology as potentially detrimental for its business and its future as AI, if not tackled in the right way. WWDC 2024 offered Apple and its CEO, Tim Cook, an opportunity to demonstrate how the company will lead in making AI a transformative, advanced, and intelligent experience for their users.

With smartphone, tablet and PC sales slowing down due to high adoption rates and offering just incremental improvements from the previous version of devices, Apple needs to reignite consumers excitement to encourage more frequent upgrades. We all remember the long queues outside Apple stores when a new iPhone was launched! The excitement generated by past product launches is critical to Apple’s business and brand.

AI Will Enable Apple To Offer Unique and Intelligent Features, Experiences and Services to Their Customers.

However, the key question remains: will these announcements be enough to secure Apple’s leading position? Many competitors (from phones to PCs vendors) have already revealed their AI strategies and devices. How can Apple stand out and how can a partnership with OpenAI help?

AI-Enabled Devices Will Be the Fastest Growing Segment in for Smartphones and PCs.

IDC forecasts that AI Smartphones to reach 170 million units in 2024, and AI PCs to account for nearly 60% of all PC shipments by 2027.

Historically, the App Store has been at the heart of the value proposition of Apple’s iPhone and the iPad. The slogan, “there’s an App for that” became iconic. However, AI is set to “kill” the apps and a new era is about to begin for Apple and the industry.

Previously, the more apps the smartphone (and the iPad) was able to run, and the more powerful the apps, the better the smartphone (or iPad). Today, the smartphone is not ‘smart’ anymore. With AI, the fewer apps needed and the more a phone can use data contextually to assist the user, the better the phone will be. This will revolutionize the user experience, requiring an operating system able to learn from all devices and services in Apple’s ecosystem. Apple’s full control of its ecosystem, hardware and software, and seamless integration gives it a significant advantage over competitors. This is particularly important when the experience will be defined by how well the phone “knows” the user, which can only be achieved by this seamless integration, while making sure the personal information and data remains private.

Although Apple is not the first to offer AI-enabled features, it is in its DNA to offer the perfect experience. AI will not just offer the best experience, but the most powerful, disruptive, personalized and private, and that’s exactly what Apple showed today with Apple Intelligence.

While AI-generated emojis will grab the headlines, Apple showcased how AI will empower users in several ways, particularly around productivity, education and entertainment. These are the areas where Apple already excels with its range of services and applications.

As User Interaction Shifts From Opening an App To Asking the Phone, Siri Will Be the Glue.

This killer feature will attract consumers to AI enabled devices. Siri will offer a unique way to interact with all Apple devices using our voice in a more personalized and conversational manner. It will become a true digital assistant, contextually understanding various aspects of users’ lives and providing human-like responses by accessing data across all devices to provide the right response to the users’ needs. This conversational digital assistant fully integrated with all devices will be a game changer, and I believe it will offer a compelling reason for many to upgrade their iPhones in the years to come.

Apple’s strength lies in the breath of its portfolio and its ecosystem. For consumers, it does not matter what an AI-enabled iPhone is, or how many TOPs it can run. What matters is how well a phone can assist users in managing their lives. By reducing the need to navigate multiple apps, Apple’s AI-enabled devices will offer a smoother, more intuitive and smarter experience. This marks the beginning of a new era for Apple and for their users.

For more insights and views, watch this conversation with Tom Mainelli at the Apple Park.

Francisco Jeronimo is VP for Data and Analytics at IDC Europe. Based in London, he leads the research that covers mobile devices, personal computing devices and emerging technology trends across Europe. His team delivers data on personal computers, tablets, smartphones, wearables, smart home and augmented reality and virtual reality, and provides in-depth analysis of the strategies and performance of the key industry players.