Xcode could soon gain generative AI tools to write code and test apps

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iPad should run Mac apps, like Xcode.
Xcode could use generative AI to help you write code.
Photo: Cult of Mac

Apple is reportedly working on a major Xcode update with artificial integration. This functionality will apparently emulate Microsoft’s GitHub Copilot, generating code based on text input.

Work on the tool has been ongoing since last year, and its testing is now expanding internally inside Apple.

Xcode might soon get an AI boost

In recent months, all popular app development tools have integrated AI to help boost developer productivity. While not always accurate, these tools can speed up the development workflow and reduce expenses by generating code for simple tasks. However, Apple is lagging behind its peers, with AI integration yet to go live in any of its offerings.

But the company is not sitting idle. Tim Cook teased Apple’s upcoming AI features during the Q1 2024 earnings call.

“As we look ahead, we will continue to invest in these and other technologies that will shape the future. That includes artificial intelligence, where we continue to spend a tremendous amount of time and effort, and we’re excited to share the details of our ongoing work in that space later this year,” said Cook on the call.

As part of this effort, Apple appears to be integrating generative AI into Xcode to speed up app development. A Bloomberg report claims the company has recently ramped up its efforts on this front. It plans to release the updated Xcode to third-party developers in early 2024.

Additionally, Apple is working on using AI for app testing. This is typically a tedious process, and automating it using artificial intelligence can help developers save a significant amount of money and time. As of now, Apple has asked its engineers to try out these features before they are released to third-party developers.

iOS 18 could get a big AI upgrade

The report reveals that Craig Federighi, Apple’s SVP of software engineering, has asked his team to prepare as many AI features as possible for this year’s OS updates.

Multiple rumors suggest Apple will use AI to make Siri smarter in iOS 18. The OS itself could offer several new generative AI features, making it one of the biggest updates to iOS since its inception.

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