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Apple preparing ‘pivotal shift’ in approach towards AI

Apple is strategically advancing its position in the artificial intelligence (AI) domain, signifying a pivotal shift in the company’s approach to integrate AI into its core operations and product ecosystem.

The recent innovations and acquisitions underscore the Cupertino-based tech giant’s focus on bringing AI to its offerings while prioritising user privacy and ethical AI, say GlobalData analysts.

Saurabh Daga, Associate Project Manager of Disruptive Tech at GlobalData, stated: “While Apple till now has appeared slow to join the AI bandwagon in comparison to the likes of Microsoft, Google, and Amazon. The recent acquisition of DarwinAI may as well be the first in a series of initiatives to recalibrate the company’s strategy toward AI. Moreover, with its existing credentials related to in-house development, it is likely looking to build a strong intellectual property (IP) base for future developments. With one of its closest rivals in consumer tech Samsung already launching AI-integrated devices in early 2024, Apple will be looking to offer OnDevice AI features in the coming iterations of its computing devices as soon as possible.”

Darwin AI’s expertise in machine vision and machine learning (ML) aligns with Apple’s aim to enhance AI capabilities. This acquisition reflects Apple’s intent to enhance its AI capabilities with solutions that are not only powerful but also optimized for efficiency, all while maintaining a steadfast commitment to privacy.

The Innovation Explorer database of GlobalData’s Disruptor Intelligence Center highlights Apple’s contributions to the advancement of AI technologies in recent times including developing techniques to run large language models (LLMs) on iPhones, unveiling an open-source multimodal LLM, and offering a generative model for 3D scene generation, signifying a robust leap forward.

GlobalData’s Patent Analytics database reveals Apple’s recent patent filings in AI, which incorporate a range of innovations, from delivering audio information via digital assistants to leveraging machine learning for physiological predictions and image forecasting. This concerted effort pinpoints Apple’s commitment to advance AI technologies that prioritize enhancing user experiences.

Daga concluded: “Apple’s stance on AI integration remains shrouded in secrecy, yet its commitment to incorporating more AI into its products is evident. Despite the lack of a fixed timeline, the prospect of integrating AI, especially generative AI raises pertinent concerns regarding data security and privacy, a challenge Apple would like to address proactively, given the inherent sensitivity of its products and user base.”

Image by <a href=”″>Markus Spiske</a> from <a href=”″>Pixabay</a>

Apple ‘looking to break free from iPhone dependence’ with Vision Pro MR device

Apple’s much-awaited Vision Pro headset is a beta device to see if it can emerge from its iPhone dependence, according to a leading analyst.

The Vision Pro, which was unveiled this week at Apple’s WWDC event, is aimed at developers with immersive use cases geared towards productivity, enterprise, and entertainment.

Anisha Bhatia, Senior Technology Analyst at GlobalData, said: “Apple’s 34 million+ active developer community will be key here, as will be cross compatibility with apps from iPhone, iPad, and MacBook platforms. This headset is expected to boost demand for associated augmented reality (AR)/virtual reality (VR) games, apps, and services, a category growing in importance to Apple’s bottom line.

“Apple is marketing the headset as an extended display – hence the name Vision Pro – steering away from any mention of the Metaverse, which Meta has seized in recent times. This is a first-gen product, and Apple is playing a long-term game. The availability of Disney’s huge content library on the Vision Pro for a full immersive experience is a plus, as is the alliance with Unity for 3D content. VR and AR headset sales and active headset engagement have been disappointing, but Apple is sitting on a pile of cash and can attract early adopters. GlobalData forecasts annual revenues from AR headsets to reach more than $30 billion by 2030, making this a market ripe for innovation.

“The Vision Pro’s $3,499 sticker price will inhibit adoption, but Apple is not looking to make money off this product just yet. Apple’s entry into this segment will garner mainstream attention for mixed reality hardware, the likes of which only Apple is capable of. The Vision Pro is Apple’s attempt at cracking open the extended reality (XR) door to create an addressable market with iterations of Vision Pro in the years to come.”

UK’s love for cars tops social media posts

A report by social media analytics platform, Netbase, has revealed the UK’s love of luxury car brands.

The Brand Love List report looks at the brands consumers express the most love for in social media posts, with Jaguar, Land Rover, BMW 3 Series and Porsche 911 just some of the models that consumers are crazy about, with BMW, Audi and Porsche all featuring in the report’s top 10.

This is the second year that the report has been run. In the UK, Apple held onto the top spot, but showed that Google, in second place, was narrowing the gap which last year was 400,000, now down to 130,000 along with a lot of positive sentiment for Google Classroom. The remainder of the top five was unchanged with Lego in third with an abundance of shared excitement for themed Lego such as Lego Batman, Tesco in fourth with popular campaign hashtags including #triedforless and #bagsofhelp while BMW was ranked fifth.

The European Top Five brands differed only slightly from the UK with BMW taking fourth spot and consumer goods brand Adidas coming in at fifth place. The automotive sector once again proved popular with customers expressing much love, particularly in relation to the Porsche 911. While consumer goods brands including Gucci, Adidas, Lego and Christian Dior S.A. accounted for nearly 45% of the top loved brands, they only represented 21% of the mentions. Conversely, technology which was dominated by Apple and Google but also included SAP, Siemens and Dyson, represented 10% of the conversation they also represented over 55% of mentions.

While there’s much love for consumer goods brands, they still don’t even come close to the volume of technology conversation across Europe.

The data was gathered using NetBase’s social media analytics platform to surface the strongest, most positive consumer emotions towards brands from 2.4 million English language posts of earned mentions. Earned mentions mean those posts that were not posted by the brand itself, inclusive of Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, Tumblr and millions of other sources during the one-year period April 2016 to April 2017. It then identified the 25 UK brands that get the most love.

The European report used the same sources across the same period from 6.5 million English language posts of earned mentions in 50+ European countries and identified a list of the 50 most loved brands.

Commenting on the UK report Paige Leidig, Chief Marketing Officer, NetBase said: “What’s interesting about automotive is that brands represent 25% of the list but account for only 13% of the conversation suggesting that there is an opportunity for them to spread the love and engage more influencers in conversation.

“The dominance of technology in social conversation is no surprise but the fact that Apple and Google are so far out in front indicates that they have now become an everyday part of the English language.”

Best global brand awarded to Apple for fourth consecutive year…

Despite attracting some questionable headlines of late, theBest Global Brands’ report devised by Interbrand has voted Apple as the ‘Best’ for the fourth consecutive year – taking into account its influence on customers, the strength it has to command a premium price, and overall financial performance.

After experiencing a 5 per cent increase in growth this year, Apple narrowly beat Google to secure the top spot; in addition to Coca-Cola (-7 per cent), Amazon (+33 per cent) and Samsung (+14 per cent). The top 29 positions were filled by automotive and technology brands, as well as the financial sector maintaining a strong performance with a total of 12 inclusions.

Interbrand’s global chief executive officer, Jez Frampton, commented on this year’s report: “These brands clearly understand their ‘anatomy of growth’ – that it’s complex, nuanced, and personal. For each brand, growth means something different, and every story is unique. The best brands are looking inward and outward, expanding into new markets, creating better experiences. They’re not just weathering change, they’re driving it.”


View the full Best 100 Brands list here

Industry Spotlight, Apple iOS 10: What do brands need to know?

Product marketing manager for Urban Airship Engage, Diana Laboy-Rush looks at the implications for brands following Apple’s recent iOS 10 release , with its support for Rich Notifications, where images, video, audio, GIFs and interactive buttons are embedded directly within push notifications.

For businesses, iOS 10 brings massive changes to Apple’s operating system that place better and richer app engagement front-and-centre. If past adoption rates hold steady, it won’t be long before all of your iPhone app users gain richer experiences that offer deeper insight into what they care about. Here are some key points that businesses should be aware of…


Reap before you sow with key improvements

iOS 10 solves existing barriers that will make current engagement efforts more effective. A Raise to Wake feature means TouchID users won’t blow past lockscreen notifications when unlocking their phones. Notifications are immediately visible as users pick up their phones. Notifications also become the default view for the Notification Center, a chronologically-ordered archive that makes messages easier to find later.


If a picture is worth 1,000 words, then a GIF or video could be worth more

Rich Notifications can include images, GIFs, audio, video and interactive buttons embedded directly within push notifications. Grab the attention of your audience with notifications that inspire action. Recent Android data analysis found a 56 per cent higher response rate to notifications with pictures versus those without.


Better visibility for richer, actionable notification experiences

With iOS 10, users get visual and written cues that there’s a richer notification experience awaiting them. Lockscreen notifications arrive with rich media thumbnails and an instruction to either “Press for more” or “Slide for more” depending on whether Force Touch is available on the device.

That’s in stark contrast to previous Apple operating systems, which had businesses building these instructions into notification text to help ensure interactive buttons were discovered.


Mind your media, or risk ruin with too much of a good thing

Apple provides maximum file sizes for images, audio and video that would be best to undercut dramatically. Rich media will impact consumers’ data plans, ranging from barely noticeable with judicious use of images, to potential reasons to delete an app for sending files that are too large or too frequent. These files will impact your bandwidth costs too. Think about opt-in campaigns where users can get a taste and choose to receive these richer, more immersive and data-heavy experiences.


Don’t be a blockhead with Rich Notifications

With brands running to emojis for a quick if quirky engagement hit, it would be easy but wrong to approach Rich Notifications in the same manner. When rich media is tailored to specific users’ interests it adds immersive depth not interpretive color to messaging campaigns.

Remember also that not all users will immediately upgrade to iOS 10, so messaging should be made to work without reference to embedded rich media or sent specifically to the segment of your users that have adopted iOS 10. Some solutions will allow you to provide alternative text if the rich media successfully downloads.”