A new chip is being created by Apple, known to those on the inside as Apple Neural Engine, that will specifically look to deal with any artificial intelligence (AI) tasks required when it comes to mobile technology. This will include things such as facial recognition and speech recognition. Eventually, the company would like to integrate the chip into some of its products such as the iPhone or iPad. But as of yet, there’s no release date, but is an indication that the company is looking to excel when it comes to AI applications.
This new chip has the ability to help various software in a number of ways:
– Augmented reality (AR): The AI chip could allow for more complex AR capabilities on mobile devices and according to the company’s CEO, Tim Cook, is likely to be featured heavily in future versions of the iPhone.
– Battery power: Increased battery life could also be on the cards with a chip solely dedicated to handling AI tasks.
– Smart assistant Siri: Siri’s processing power could be enhanced with a little help from the new AI chip, allowing it to process data on the actual mobile device rather than via a remote server. This would speed up processing times and essentially enable faster machine learning (ML).
Apple isn’t the first company to produce this kind of AI chip. Google has its Tensor Processing Unit (TPU) that’s been in operation since 2015, and more recently Qualcomm released the Snapdragon 835 mobile processor that allows ML trained applications to run directly from the device. Advancements in AI are helping digital assistants such as Apple’s Siri and Amazon’s Alexa become more helpful and more intelligent too. They can now comprehend information better than ever before and with thanks to upgrades in mobile networks, have fast response times too.
People are beginning to warm more to voice assistant as well, with as many as 65% of US smartphone owners using these applications in 2015, which is an increase of 30% from just two years prior to that. But, there are still a number of barriers to break down before everyone is convinced of their usefulness. A recent report was compiled by Jessica Smith, research analyst for BI Intelligence, that explains what’s behind the driving force in this recent adoption of digital voice assistants. It also goes on to discuss which are the leading voice assistants currently and through what devices they can be used. A major barrier to mass adoption is also noted in the report.
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