“Apple Purchases AI Company Focusing on Oversight of Production Components”

Apple has added another AI startup to its acquisition list with Canada-based DarwinAI, which specializes in vision-based tech to observe components during manufacturing to improve efficiency, Bloomberg reported. DarwinAI had raised over $15 million in funding across various rounds from investors including BDC Capital’s Deep Tech Venture Fund, Honeywell Ventures, Obvious Ventures, and Inovia Capital. BDC Capital and Obvious Venture didn’t comment on the story at the time of writing. As Bloomberg noted in its report, apart from helping with manufacturing efficiency, DarwinAI uses techniques to make AI models smaller and faster. This could be useful for on-device generative AI features Apple hopes to introduce in iOS 18 this year.

According to Bloomberg, Apple has recently acquired DarwinAI, a Canadian company that specializes in vision-based technology for monitoring components during manufacturing in order to improve efficiency. Although the tech giant and DarwinAI have not officially announced the deal, several members of the startup’s team have updated their LinkedIn profiles to show that they have joined Apple’s machine learning teams as of January.

DarwinAI has received funding of over $15 million from various investors, including BDC Capital‘s Deep Tech Venture Fund, Honeywell Ventures, Obvious Ventures, and Inovia Capital. While BDC Capital’s website confirms that it has received an exit from DarwinAI, Obvious Ventures has updated their portfolio to reflect that the startup has been acquired.

At this time, neither BDC Capital nor Obvious Ventures have commented on the news. Apple also has not yet responded to requests for comment.

Bloomberg has noted in their report that aside from improving efficiency in manufacturing, DarwinAI also utilizes techniques to make AI models smaller and faster. This could prove beneficial for Apple’s plans to introduce on-device generative AI features in the upcoming iOS 18.

Apple has been slower in releasing AI-powered features compared to other competitors such as OpenAI, Google, Meta, and Microsoft. However, during a quarterly earnings call with analysts in February, Tim Cook stated that the company does have plans to introduce such features “later this year.”

“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,” Cook said.

Last year, the Apple CEO confirmed investment in AI efforts. The company’s job listings have shown that they are exploring the integration of AI in various internal and external areas, such as Siri, developer tools, and customer support.

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Ava Patel

Ava Patel is a cultural critic and commentator with a focus on literature and the arts. She is known for her thought-provoking essays and reviews, and has a talent for bringing new and diverse voices to the forefront of the cultural conversation.

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