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The 'father of the iPod' says Apple is doing a brilliant job with AI

Kwan Wei Kevin Tan   

The 'father of the iPod' says Apple is doing a brilliant job with AI
  • iPod inventor Tony Fadell thinks Apple is on the right track when it comes to AI.
  • Fadell said Apple's latest AI offerings are a "solid first effort" that focuses on users.

Apple may seem to be trailing flashy AI firms like OpenAI, but iPod inventor Tony Fadell thinks the company's slow but steady approach to the technology is the right one.

"Apple is taking baby steps because right now that is all we can count on to deliver successfully," Fadell wrote on X on Tuesday. "This is a solid first effort by Apple focusing on real benefits to users (ex. Siri)."

Fadell was responding to an article by TechCrunch that praised Apple's "boring and practical" approach toward AI. The iPhone maker unveiled its new AI offerings on Monday during a keynote presentation at its annual Worldwide Developers Conference.

Fadell left Apple back in 2010 but weighed in with his assessment of the AI industry, which he said was being overtaken by investor hype and frenzy.

"Today's AI LLMs are mostly glorified demos for the really interesting applications. They are turning into a commodity because they're overfunded by FOMO-driven VCs who don't truly understand the technology limitations that drive real application requirements," he said.

In fact, Fadell says the AI craze is highly reminiscent of the rush to fund companies working on self-driving cars over a decade ago.

"It was the NEXT big thing. What do we have 10-12 years later? Think about how many years have past for those efforts to be perfected (and they still aren't yet). We haven't even seen a self-driving car business work yet either," he said.

"How many billions were spent on that next big thing before reality set in?! AI is VERY similar," he continued.

Markets were initially skeptical of Apple's AI work, with the company's shares falling by 2% on Monday after the event. But a positive reception from Wall Street analysts sent the stock soaring 7% on Tuesday.

Representatives for Apple didn't immediately respond to a request for comment from BI sent outside regular business hours.

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