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Apple Acquires DarwinAI to Increase Manufacturing Efficiency

ByHuey Yee Ong

Mar 20, 2024
Apple Acquires DarwinAI to Increase Manufacturing Efficiency

Apple has recently acquired DarwinAI, a Canada-based startup known for its innovative vision-based technology aimed at improving manufacturing efficiency. This addition to Apple’s portfolio highlights the tech giant’s ongoing efforts to integrate advanced AI into its operations, as reported by Bloomberg.

While there hasn’t been an official announcement from either Apple or DarwinAI regarding the acquisition, evidence of the deal has surfaced through various channels. Notably, several DarwinAI team members have transitioned to Apple’s machine learning teams in January, showcasing their expertise on LinkedIn profiles.

DarwinAI had previously attracted significant attention and investment, raising over $15 million across different funding rounds, including:

  • BDC Capital’s Deep Tech Venture Fund
  • Honeywell Ventures
  • Obvious Ventures
  • Inovia Capital

The confirmation of the acquisition came indirectly through BDC Capital’s website announcement of an exit from DarwinAI and Obvious Ventures’ portfolio update.

Although BDC Capital and Obvious Ventures refrained from commenting on the acquisition story, the move is seen as a pivotal moment for Apple in harnessing AI for manufacturing purposes. DarwinAI’s specialty in making AI models smaller and faster aligns with Apple’s aspirations to integrate generative AI features within its iOS 18 release, as noted by Bloomberg.

What DarwinAI’s Acquisition Means for Apple’s Future Products

Apple has been relatively slow in rolling out generative AI (GenAI)-powered features compared to competitors like OpenAI, Google, Meta, and Microsoft. However, Apple CEO Tim Cook hinted at a change in pace, promising the introduction of such features “later this year” during a quarterly earnings call with analysts. This statement underscores Apple’s commitment to expanding its AI capabilities and enhancing user experiences across its product range.

Confirming its deep dive into generative AI, Apple has been actively investing in this area, as emphasized by Tim Cook last year. The company’s job listings further reveal an ambition to infuse AI across various domains, including Siri, developer tools, and customer support, marking a significant step towards embedding AI more comprehensively within its ecosystem.


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Featured Image courtesy of Vecteezy & DarwinAI on Medium

Huey Yee Ong

Hello, from one tech geek to another. Not your beloved TechCrunch writer, but a writer with an avid interest in the fast-paced tech scenes and all the latest tech mojo. I bring with me a unique take towards tech with a honed applied psychology perspective to make tech news digestible. In other words, I deliver tech news that is easy to read.

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