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By Dan Moren for Macworld
There’s an age-old take when it comes to Apple and hot new technologies: if the company hasn’t shipped whatever everybody else in the industry is currently focusing on, it must be behind.
This is rarely the truth.
Apple’s business is like the proverbial iceberg: we only see the tip of what the company’s doing, while the vast majority of its research and development efforts are looming beneath the surface. Just look at its finances in its most recent quarter: it spent $7.7 billion on R&D, accounting for more than half of all of its operating expenses.
The latest technology to feature in this storyline is, of course, artificial intelligence. How can the company compete in this burgeoning new market if it doesn’t come out with a chatbot or image generator post haste? (Never mind that it still hasn’t shipped its virtual reality headset that was the last market where the company was clearly falling behind.)
But, as is always the case with this particular canard, the truth is that Apple’s been doing AI in its own particular way, and it’s never about chasing the market.