Apple Acquires French Ai Startup To Boost On-Device Intelligence Capabilities

Apple AI

Apple recently completed the acquisition of Datakalab, a Paris-based startup focused on artificial intelligence, emphasizing its initiative to enhance on-device AI capabilities. Datakalab, known for its advanced work in algorithm compression and embedded AI systems, became part of Apple following a discreet transaction reported in a European Commission document found by the French media outlet Challenges, via iPhoneSoft, on December 17 of the previous year. Although the financial specifics of the deal are not public, the acquisition is likely a move by Apple to incorporate more sophisticated AI features into its products, possibly starting with iOS 18.

Datakalab, founded in 2016 by Xavier and Lucas Fischer, has excelled in developing deep learning algorithms that are both energy-efficient and powerful, operating independently from cloud-based systems. This methodology is in line with Apple’s commitment to ensuring user privacy and data security by processing information locally, which not only reduces the risk of data breaches but also enhances processing speed. The ability of the startup to adapt neural networks for efficient performance on mobile devices such as smartphones and tablets was probably a significant reason for Apple’s interest.

According to Bloomberg’s Mark Gurman, Apple plans for its large language models (LLMs) to operate exclusively on devices, setting them apart from the prevalent cloud-based AI services. Although this might limit the AI’s capabilities in some areas, Gurman noted that Apple might bridge these gaps by potentially licensing technologies from Google and other AI service providers.

Before joining Apple, Datakalab worked on several prominent projects, including collaborations with the French government and Disney. The firm developed technologies for analyzing human emotions through facial recognition and visual data analysis, which were used to track real-time audience reactions in movie theaters. Expectations are high for Apple to unveil its enhanced AI strategy during the early June previews of its upcoming operating systems at the Worldwide Developers Conference (WWDC).

Shakes Gilles

Shakes covers stories ranging from science to health, to technology, to astronomy, etc... On a typical weekend, you'll find him enjoying a picnic at a local park or playing soccer with friends.