iOS 18 concept video
Apple could run iOS 18’s AI features on-device on the iPhone.
Concept: Kevin Kall

Apple’s large language model that will power iOS 18’s AI features could run entirely locally. This would prioritize user privacy and offer faster response times.

However, running AI features on-device will have downsides, as they might not be as powerful as on some Android phones.

iOS 18’s AI features might value privacy and experience

Android phones with generative AI features offload all the processing and heavy lifting to the cloud. This makes them powerful and ensures the phone’s AI processing capabilities do not limit them. The catch is the privacy risk involved, as your data might be shared and uploaded to the cloud. Plus, the high response times can lead to a poor user experience.

Apple aims to bypass these problems with on-device processing, reports Bloomberg‘s Mark Gurman in his Power On newsletter. This means the phone will process the AI commands locally instead of offloading them to the cloud. This is a more privacy-friendly approach, though Apple might have to limit its AI features based on the chip’s AI processing capabilities.

Apple trails Google and Microsoft in the generative AI features race. Running its LLM locally could give Apple’s AI features a unique advantage over its competition. Plus, the company can tout the privacy benefits of its approach.

A previous report claims that the iPhone 16 will ship with a more powerful Neural Engine to power some of iOS 18’s Generative AI features. This could mean that some demanding AI features might not come to existing iPhones.

Apple could partner with Google and integrate Gemini to power iOS 18’s more powerful generative AI features.

Apple’s marketing strategy could help its AI features stand out

Additionally, in the latest edition of the Power On newsletter, Gurman says Apple will adopt a different marketing strategy for iOS 18’s AI features. Instead of highlighting the generative AI tools, the company will show how the AI features will benefit users in daily use.

Apple’s marketing prowess could help its generative AI features stand out, even if the iPhone’s AI is less powerful than competitors.

[ For more curated Apple news, check out the main news page here]

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