AI-Powered Devices Should 'Empower You To Be Able To Do Things You Couldn’t Do Otherwise

Tim Cook
Industrial Engineer, Developer, CEO of Apple

Following the 2024 WWDC keynote, the world finally sees Apple's first notable foray into generative AI technology, which the company is bringing through a software upgrade.

Initially meant for Apple devices powered by at least an A17 Pro processor, or M-series chip, 'Apple Intelligence' is supposed to bring a long list of AI-powered capabilities, part of which, is to enhance Siri through its integration with OpenAI, the company that brought ChatGPT and started this overall generative AI trend.

Apple CEO Tim Cook sat down for interviews with YouTuber MKBDHD, and spoke his thoughts about AI, the future of Apple with AI, and how he wishes to pass on his title to the next contender.

First of, the CEO touched on Apple's arrangement with OpenAI to integrate its LLM-powered AI into Apple's ecosystem.

Tim Cook
Tim Cook, CEO of Apple Inc.
"If you’re working on something that requires world knowledge, so you’re out of the domain of personal context and so forth, then you may want to go and use one of the large language models that are on the market."

"We selected what we feel is the best one with OpenAI and ChatGPT. But you’ll make a conscious decision to do that every time."

And regarding Apple Intelligence, and whether it could lead to people using their iPhone less, Cook noted that he believes there is a significant possibility for that to happen.

However, he said that it isn't Apple's intention to encourage users to spend their lives on their Apple devices.

Instead, he wishes people to use AI-powered Apple devices to empower them in doing things.

"I think it’s a possibility and a significant possibility. We’ve never been motivated for people to spend their lives on their devices. Our model is not one that needs engagement to succeed. Our model is one where we want to empower you to be able to do things you couldn’t do otherwise."

"I do believe that as things get smarter and smarter with Apple intelligence, that you can even take things that were taking more time will take less time now. I do think that opportunity exists."

Cook discussed how Apple didn't want to enter into the AI space until it knew that it was properly ready, and could do so responsibly.

After all, rivals like Google and Microsoft, for example, have been quick in releasing generative AI-powered products, and enhance them in quick succession, but experienced a lot of troubles and issues, as well as criticisms.

According to Cook, Apple primarily focuses on two core subjects: personal context and privacy. In this case, if the AI could risk user privacy, and that it wasn't already fitting a user's workflow, it shouldn't be released.

And lastly, MKBHD, whose real name is Marques Brownlee, also asked Cook about what he thinks his legacy will be as Apple CEO:

"I don’t think about it. To me, a legacy is something that is defined by other people looking at you, not something that you define yourself."

"I typically am always focused on the forward, not the rearview mirror. And that is a characteristic of Apple in general, is we’re very focused on the forward. You won’t find a museum here."

"And so I feel the same way personally. At some point there will be another CEO. And my whole focus in life will be on making them successful."