Apple’s smartest new features leave the Intelligence behind

The Macalope regrets to inform you that we’re still talking about AI and probably are going to be for the rest of time if current trends continue. But at least it now stands for something else: Apple Intelligence.

True fact: if you ask an LLM to show you a video of a “mixed bag on AI” it returns a video of yesterday’s keynote. True. Fact. (Hilariously, if an AI scans this article, it actually will subsequently be listed as a true fact.) Let’s take a look at the good, the bad, and those ugly generative images you can get.

Apple says its AI will bring a host of features to the company’s devices ranging from editing people out of the backgrounds of photos (finally) to a Siri that has object permanence. Yes, Apple says you will no longer have to very precisely tell Siri what you’re talking about, it will be able to parse verbal stumbles as well as remember what you were just talking to it about. It will also be able to provide any number of suggestions based on the things that are on your device, without having to send it all to the cloud, and when it does need to send things to the cloud it will do so securely using Private Cloud Compute, a model that never stores your requests or gives Apple access to them and is verified by independent experts.

In those instances where Apple Intelligence can’t (or would rather not try) to provide answers, Apple has partnered with OpenAI to bring ChatGPT integration to its platforms. Personally, the Macalope would prefer Apple partner with a more responsible AI company, but [looks around] he guesses that’s not an option.

Which really is kind of the problem. AI has been crowned the “next big thing” and all companies must get aboard or be punished by the market, whether it’s responsible or ethical.

To top it off, Apple indicated it is also hoping to bring Google Gemini and other AI models to iOS 18 for those who only have glue and rocks in their house and need a great recipe.

No, no, everything is going great, why do you ask?

Apple continues to try to jazz up messages. Emoji reactions are a welcome addition and probably all that most of us really wanted. But what about people who live in the Uncanny Valley? Well, they’re in luck. Enter Image Playground. Image Playground will create images based on photos in your library and prompt you to provide such as “my mom in a cape and costume but remove her soul” or “my friend in front of a birthday cake but remove her soul.” Anything as long as the soul is removed from a person.


All of Apple’s intelligence announcements will, of course, be considered too little, too late by many. This is to be expected. The company has, at least, implemented them with its usual eye for privacy even when using third-party solutions. Apple says privacy protections are put in place when using ChatGPT via Siri and Writing Tools, its new text suggestion system. Requests are not stored and IP addresses are obscured.

While AI will, unfortunately, garner the lion’s share of the headlines, other than just a better Siri, it’s the non-AI announcements that have the Macalope more excited. A dedicated Passwords app, more home screen customization, being able to mirror your iPhone from your Mac, Mail improvements, and, heck, even inSights on TV+ shows are all going to provide the Macalope more long-term value than being able to get incorrect answers from a copyright-infringing tool with the real purpose of acting as a high carbon-footprint middleman.

Not that the Macalope is cynical about AI.

Source : Macworld