Apple purchased Xnor.ai, a company that creates artificial intelligence software for mobile devices. The acquisition will apparently lead to AI applications running directly on iPhones, iPads, etc., not outsourced to the cloud. This should make these tasks more private and quicker.
Xnor.ai promises “AI everywhere”
Xnor.ai said of its goals, “We’re unleashing the power of AI to run as efficiently on small inexpensive devices as it does in massive data centers. And internet connectivity isn’t necessary anymore. We call this AI everywhere.”
This company’s technology could potentially be used in Apple’s Siri voice assistant. Currently, most spoken commands are uploaded to servers where AI is used to transform the sounds into words an iPhone can understand. If this process could be done on the mobile device instead, it would be much more private — only the iPhone would ever hear what users say.
The advantages of this are obvious given the furor last summer after it was revealed that real people listen to recordings of conversations with Siri, and sometimes overhear more than that.
Or consider the job of identifying objects in pictures. On-device AI could be used let users easily find every picture on their iPhone that has a dog in it.
Apple confirmed the purchase of Xnor.ai to Axios.
Watch Xnor.ai’s introductory video: