Apple’s custom M2 Ultra and M4 chips to power AI in data centers

Apple is taking a major step forward in artificial intelligence (AI) by building its own data centers with custom M-series chips. This move frees the tech giant from relying on external solutions for AI processing.

These powerful chips, including the M2 Ultra and the recently announced M4, will handle demanding AI tasks like image generation and content summarization. This will free up iPhones, iPads, and Macs to focus on simpler on-device AI tasks. The project, internally called ACDC (Apple Chips in Data Centers), prioritizes user privacy by leveraging Apple’s Secure Enclave technology to keep user data secure.

m2 ultra Mac Pro

According to a recent report from Bloomberg’s Mark Gurman, Apple is set to power some of its upcoming AI features via data centers equipped with its own Apple Silicon chips. These chips, similar to those designed for the Mac, will be integrated into cloud-computing servers to handle the most advanced AI tasks destined for Apple devices.

The company is placing high-end chips — similar to ones it designed for the Mac — in cloud-computing servers designed to process the most advanced AI tasks coming to Apple devices, according to people familiar with the matter. Simpler AI-related features will be processed directly on iPhones, iPads and Macs, said the people, who asked not to be identified because the plan is still under wraps.

Apple’s AI servers will feature high-end chips such as the M2 Ultra and the recently announced M4 processors. These servers will manage complex AI duties, including image generation, news article summarization, and crafting long-form email responses. Simpler AI tasks, like providing users with summaries of missed notifications and incoming text messages, will be handled directly on iPhones, iPads, and Macs.

Internally referred to as the ACDC (Apple Chips in Data Centers) project, Apple’s initiative highlights its commitment to user privacy. The deployment of in-house chips ensures that user data remains secure, thanks to Apple’s Secure Enclave technology.

Apple will reveal its AI strategy at this year’s Worldwide Developers Conference (WWDC). The tech giant has been in talks with industry players like Google and OpenAI to explore possible partnerships for generative AI services. With this move, Apple joins tech giants like Amazon, Google, Microsoft, and Meta in investing in proprietary server processors, signaling a shift away from traditional components.

About the Author

Asma is an editor at iThinkDifferent with a strong focus on social media, Apple news, streaming services, guides, mobile gaming, app reviews, and more. When not blogging, Asma loves to play with her cat, draw, and binge on Netflix shows.

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