Apple Inc. is clearly attempting to fix the problems with its AI program in order to gain back the market dominance that it had during the early days of the AI industry and this was exhibited once again as John Giannandrea – in-charge of Google’s AI operations, was poached by Apple.
The push by Google to become the leader in AI based devices and software has been led by Scottish-born Giannandrea. He had joined Google in 2010 following the acquisition of his startup Metaweb. Giannandrea has led the Google Brain team which is the research team of the search engine company in the field of AI and the team was tasked of reorganizing the technology that is used by Google to offer some its unique products including the search, translation and voice recognition.
The present position of Google as a technologically superior firm in the field of voice controlled assistants, where it’s main rival is Amazon, has also been led by him. that market position was once accorded to Apple with its Siri technology was the first for many users. However, Apple had failed to reap the benefits of this initial market lead.
There have been limited attempts by Apple to better the underlying technology that drives the product on the overall because of internal feuds, according to the technology site The Information which published an article in March, which had bene ongoing for seven years within the Siri team and the multiple attempts for recognition of the basic technology underpinning the feature derailed because of internal politics.
And in February, the problems for Siri reached a peak as there were dampening reviews for the AI technology used in its latest product – the HomePad – which was Apple’s bet to complete against Amazon’s Echo and Google’s Home smart speakers. While the audio quality was praised in the reviews, the AI was criticized ot be poor.
However, with 161 posts being advertised for its Siri project in March this year, Apple has been attempting to revive and rejuvenate its effort for Siri redemption in recent weeks. This was capped off with the appointment of Giannandrea – which was first reported by the New York Times.
There are however other issues that Apple needs to address apart from the obvious dearth of talent at its Siri project. The company needs to convince consumers that it has the ability to create an acceptable set of services without embracing a data-heavy approach that as has been taken by both Amazon and Google.
Arguments that large sets of data is critical in the training process for customized AI were used by some of the large tech companies to increase their efforts to acquire data of consumers in recent years. However, Apple appears to have moved in the opposite direction. The company has taken an approach to gather and use less of users’ data as it used to do earlier and instead altered its technology.
The company is of the opinion that the value of privacy is understood by its users and hence they would readily accept some degree of friction against safeguarding their personal data.
(Adapted from TheGuardian.com)