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  • Writer's pictureSarah Ruivivar

Jony Ive's Billion-Dollar Quest for AI's iPhone Moment

Updated: Oct 29, 2023

📸 by Jerod Harris/Getty Images for Vox Media

Here's a juicy tidbit that's got the tech world buzzing: Jony Ive, Apple’s former chief design officer, is reportedly teaming up with OpenAI to create what's being dubbed the "iPhone of artificial intelligence".

And guess what? They've got a cool $1 billion in their back pocket, courtesy of Softbank CEO Masayoshi Son.

This isn't just a wild tech dream, folks. According to the Financial Times, OpenAI's CEO, Sam Altman, is keen to use Ive’s design firm, LoveFrom, to develop OpenAI’s debut consumer device. The duo have been brainstorming at Ive’s San Francisco studio, cooking up ideas for this groundbreaking product.

The goal? To create a device that offers a "more natural and intuitive user experience" for interacting with artificial intelligence. They're drawing inspiration from the original iPhone's touchscreen tech, which completely transformed our interaction with the mobile internet.

Son, the money man behind the project, is pushing for Arm, a chip design company in which he holds a 90% stake, to play a central role.

But here's the twist: Ive, who was instrumental in the creation of the first iPhone, has previously voiced concerns about smartphones causing compulsive behaviour. He believes tech companies have a "moral responsibility" to mitigate the addictive nature of their technology and to anticipate potential unintended consequences.

This project with OpenAI could be Ive's chance to design an interactive computing device that's less screen-dependent. Altman, who has invested in Humane, a startup developing a screenless wearable AI device, brings valuable experience to the table.

While the project is still in its early stages and no deal has been confirmed, the discussions are said to be "serious". So, property pros, keep your eyes peeled for the next big thing in AI!

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