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Apple delays release of new AI features in Europe – DW (English)

Apple said Friday it would delay the rollout of its recently announced AI features in Europe because of “regulatory uncertainties.”

An Apple spokesperson cited for the delay concerns over the European Union’s Digital Markets Act (DMA), the bloc’s landmark legislation aimed at curbing the power of big tech.

“We do not believe we will be able to roll out these features to our EU users this year,” the spokesperson said.

Earlier this month, the company unveiled “Apple Intelligence,” its suite of AI features for its coveted devices. 

The announcement came as an apparent attempt by Apple to reassure its users that it is not falling behind in the AI frenzy. It included a partnership with OpenAI to make ChatGPT available to iPhone users. 

The Apple Intelligence request for permission to use ChatGPT in this illustration photo
With Apple’s new AI features, users can decide whether to allow their devices to use ChatGPT to carry out certain tasksImage: Jaap Arriens/NurPhoto/picture alliance

Why is Apple delaying AI rollout in Europe?

According to Apple, the AI capabilities were put on hold over concern “that the interoperability requirements of the DMA could force us to compromise the integrity of our products in ways that risk user privacy and data security.”

“We are committed to collaborating with the European Commission in an attempt to find a solution that would enable us to deliver these features to our EU customers without compromising their safety,” the company added.

Apple is also delaying the release of its iPhone Mirroring and SharePlay Screen Sharing enhancements in Europe.

Apple Intelligence, which runs only on the company’s in-house technology, will enable users to create their own emojis based on a description in everyday language, or to generate brief summaries of emails in the mailbox.

What is the DMA?

In an effort to establish fair competition in Europe, the EU’s  Digital Markets Act sets out a list of dos and don’ts for designated internet gatekeepers, including Apple.

The DMA enables the European Commission, the EU’s executive arm, to investigate, fine and impose structural remedies on non-compliant gatekeepers.

Fines can reach up to 10 percent of global annual turnover, with repeat offenders facing fines of up to 20 percent.

The EU’s competition chief, Margrethe Vestager, warned on Tuesday that Apple was failing to comply with the DMA as the bloc conducts an investigation into Apple’s business practices.

dh/fb (AFP, Reuters)