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Apple is considering alliances with a Chinese tech giant and rivals as the AI war heats up

WorldApple is considering alliances with a Chinese tech giant and rivals as the AI war heats up

Apple wants AI tech on its iPhones – and is reportedly in talks with two of its rivals and a Chinese internet giant to make it happen.

The Wall Street Journal reported that Apple is in early discussions with Baidu – the go-to search engine in China – to bring its generative AI model, the Ernie Bot, to iPhones in China in compliance with local law.
The company is also in discussions with Google and OpenAI for artificial intelligence tech to power its devices around the rest of the world, the Journal reported.
Apple CEO Tim Cook attends the opening of a new flagship Apple store in Shanghai, China on Thursday. Photo: Liu Ying / Xinhua via AP
In China, a rule from August mandated that all generative AI models be vetted by regulators, according to the Journal, and Baidu’s Ernie Bot has the green light.

Apple has also invested in building its own AI technology that would boost apps such as Siri, photo editing and email, according to the Journal.

Apple did not immediately respond to a request for comment from Business Insider.

The tech giant has been relatively late to the AI market, with CEO Tim Cook previously saying the company would unveil its plans later this year.

US sues Apple in landmark iPhone monopoly case

Meanwhile, OpenAI and other AI companies have released their chatbots and are jostling for investors’ cash.

Microsoft has also made a major push, bringing on Google DeepMind founder Mustafa Suleyman to run its AI division after its prior attempt to hire OpenAI CEO Sam Altman did not work out.

Cook is currently in China to back up his commitment to the country. iPhone sales are sagging in China because of a weak economy, a crackdown on Apple devices for Chinese government employees and the ascendance of local maker Huawei Technologies.

Cook christened a new shop in Shanghai and is attending the China Development Forum, where business leaders hobnob with local policymakers.

But while Cook is away, the company has unexpected trouble on the US home front: a sweeping antitrust lawsuit by the Justice Department.

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