iPhone 16 In China To Feature Baidu’s AI Services And Ernie Bot

iPhone 16 In China To Feature Baidu's AI Services And Ernie Bot

Reports suggest that the upcoming iPhone 16 series in China may incorporate advanced artificial intelligence (AI) services provided by Baidu, a prominent Chinese tech company. This collaboration could potentially bring Baidu’s Ernie Bot, a native AI assistant, and a large language model (LLM) to Apple’s ecosystem in China.

According to sources, Apple is in discussions with Baidu to integrate its AI capabilities into the upcoming iPhone 16 series and macOS 15. Earlier speculations hinted at a similar partnership between Google and Apple, aiming to utilize Google’s Gemini AI for global markets.

iPhone 16 In China

Initial reports from the Wall Street Journal on 22nd March unveiled Apple’s preliminary talks with Baidu regarding the integration of its generative AI technology into Apple’s operating systems and devices. 

On Monday, Morning Star’s report disclosed that Baidu’s shares surged by 5.4 percent following news from an undisclosed Chinese media source about the partnership between the two tech giants.

Apple’s exploration of partnerships extended beyond Baidu, with discussions reportedly held with Alibaba and other Chinese AI companies. However, Baidu emerged as the preferred choice due to its significant expertise and presence in the AI domain. It is worth noting that Baidu introduced Ernie Bot, an AI chatbot, powered by the Ernie 4.0 LLM. Since the launch of the AI chatbot, it garnered over 100 million users by December 2023.

According to WSJ, Apple is seeking a domestic AI technology partner in China due to regulatory challenges in the region. China mandates that all large language models (LLMs) operating within its borders undergo approval and inspection by its cyberspace regulatory authority before public release. 

Presently, over 40 LLMs have gained approval from regulators. Since Google Gemini and OpenAI are not active in China, the report suggests that Apple’s sole recourse was to collaborate with a local entity.

While the specifics of the partnership remain undisclosed, it’s uncertain whether Baidu’s branding will feature on the AI features integrated by Apple. 

However, reports suggest that Apple intends to introduce on-device AI capabilities rather than relying on cloud-based services. As a result, users in China might not encounter Ernie Bot or other recognizable Baidu AI tools, as Apple may solely utilize the engine to power the AI features.

As the collaboration between the two tech giants progresses, tech enthusiasts are eagerly waiting for the launch of the iPhone 16 in China, which is set to leverage Baidu’s advanced AI services.

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Margaret Rouse
Margaret Rouse is a leading and renowned technical writer and teacher based out of Athens, New York. She's an award-winner renowned for her ability to bridge the communication gap between techies and business professionals. With 20+ years of experience under her belt, Margaret’s IT definitions have been a trusted resource, appearing in Que's encyclopedia of tech terms and cited by prestigious publications like The New York Times, Time Magazine, and USA Today. It doesn’t stop there. Her popularity is also talked about by leading online giants like ZDNet, PC Magazine, and Discovery Magazine. She has been a steady pillar for Asiamediajournal since 2022. But accolades aside, Margaret finds true joy in something a little different: empowering IT and business professionals to understand each other's jargon. Margaret’s focus is on simplifying IT lingos for the common people to make understanding the concepts simpler and clearer.