Elon Musk threatens to ban over 1.4B Apple users as it plans OpenAI integration

Billionaire Elon Musk wants to ban Apple Inc. devices from his companies if OpenAI’s artificial intelligence software is integrated at the operating system level, calling the tie-up a security risk.

Apple has approximately over 1.4 billion active iPhone users alone worldwide, apart from its Mac users which were at an estimated 100 million in 2020, and its Apple watch user base.

The remarks followed a presentation Monday by Apple Inc., when the iPhone maker said that customers would have access to OpenAI’s ChatGPT chatbot through the Siri digital assistant. Apple plans to roll out the capabilities as part of a suite of new AI features

In a bold statement on the social media platform X, Musk branded Apple’s potential move as a “security violation.” He further stipulated that visitors bringing Apple devices would be required to leave them at the entrance, where they would be stored in a Faraday cage to prevent any potential electronic interference or data transmission.

If Apple integrates OpenAI at the OS level, then Apple devices will be banned at my company. That is an unacceptable security violation.

“And visitors will have to check their Apple devices at the door, where they will be stored in a Faraday cage,” he tweeted in a Monday night post on X

What to know

Earlier, Apple had unveiled a suite of AI enhancements across its software ecosystem and announced its partnership with OpenAI. This collaboration aims to embed ChatGPT technology within Apple’s devices, enhancing user experience through advanced AI-driven functionalities.

Apple maintains that its AI developments are designed with privacy as a fundamental principle, utilizing a blend of on-device processing and cloud computing to safeguard user data. Despite these assurances, Musk’s skepticism was palpable.

It’s patently absurd that Apple isn’t smart enough to make their own AI, yet is somehow capable of ensuring that OpenAI will protect your security & privacy!” Musk remarked on X, casting doubt on Apple’s capability to manage AI integration securely.


The backdrop to Musk’s current opposition is his tumultuous history with OpenAI. Founded in 2015 with the mission to create AI technologies for the collective good of humanity, OpenAI’s trajectory has diverged from its original non-profit ethos, much to Musk’s disapproval.

In March, Musk initiated legal action against OpenAI and its CEO, Sam Altman, alleging a deviation from their foundational goals in favour of profit-oriented ventures.

Simultaneously, Musk embarked on his own AI venture, xAI, established as a counterbalance to OpenAI’s advancements. With a valuation of $24 billion following a substantial $6 billion infusion in its Series B funding round, xAI is positioned as a competitor to ChatGPT, aiming to develop alternative AI solutions that align more closely with Musk’s vision of responsible and ethical AI development.

Musk’s latest salvo against Apple and OpenAI shows the broader industry battle lines being drawn over the future of AI and the control of user data.



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