Apple's latest hire might help burnish its AI image

CNET | 4/5/2019 | Ian Sherr
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Apple's pushing further into AI.

The next time you think of Apple and artificial intelligence, it might be about more than how frustrating Siri can be.

Tech - Giant - Ian - Goodfellow - Scientist

The tech giant poached Ian Goodfellow, a high-profile scientist in the artificial intelligence world, from Google last month. CNBC spotted the move when Goodfellow, who helped invent a new approach to the technology, updated his LinkedIn page to indicate he's working as Apple's "director of machine learning" at its secretive "Special Projects" group.

Goodfellow isn't the only big name hire Apple's poached from Google. Last year, the company lured John Giannandrea away from its rival, where he'd been the head of search. At Apple, he handles Siri, as well as its machine learning technology for app developers.

Machine - Learning - AI - Apple - Future

"Machine learning and AI are important to Apple's future as they are fundamentally changing the way people interact with technology, and already helping our customers live better lives," Apple CEO Tim Cook said in a statement last year, when promoting Giannandrea to senior vice president of machine learning and artificial intelligence strategy.

Apple didn't respond to a request for comment about Goodfellow.

Hires - Signs - Apple - World - AI

The hires are the latest signs Apple is pushing more heavily into the world of AI, where it isn't broadly viewed as a leader the way Google and Facebook are. AI is increasingly seen as a key to a new way of computing that will allow machines to identify people in video feeds, drive our cars and anticipate our schedules.

Apple's Siri was one of the first voice assistants offered to the public when it was released in 2011. But it's struggled to keep up with a growing list of competitors.

Amazon - Alexa - Example - Way - Appliances

Amazon's Alexa, for example, has stood out as an easy way to connect with smart appliances, such as light switches, security systems and even your car. Meanwhile, Google's made waves turning its...
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