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Apple Intelligence rules out EU launch in 2024 over antitrust laws

This is the Apple logo at an Apple store in Pittsburgh, Monday, June 3, 2024. (AP Photo/Gene J. Puskar)
This is the Apple logo at an Apple store in Pittsburgh, Monday, June 3, 2024. (AP Photo/Gene J. Puskar) Copyright Gene J. Puskar/Copyright 2024 The AP. All rights reserved
Copyright Gene J. Puskar/Copyright 2024 The AP. All rights reserved
By Indrabati Lahiri
Published on Updated
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The decision is due to the EU's Digital Markets Act which requires devices to be able to work across all platforms, including competing producers.

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Apple Intelligence will not be launched within the EU in 2024 because of privacy and security concerns, the US group has revealed.

That means iPhone owners within the EU will not be able to plug into new Apple artificial intelligence (AI) features, such as Apple Intelligence, improvements to the SharePlay screen-sharing feature and iPhone Mirroring. The features, expected to be released later this year, will not come to the EU because of the recent Digital Markets Act (DMA) which has led to increased regulatory complications. 

Apple says one of the main requirements of the DMA, interoperability, conflicts with its own stance on privacy and security concerns. 

Interoperability means that key features, such as texting, calling, voice messages, and the sharing of images and videos, should work across third-party operators and competing devices. 

The Digital Markets Act aims to ensure that the major tech companies — the Magnificent Seven, including Apple, Amazon, Alphabet, Meta, and Microsoft — do not gate-keep certain technologies or features. Other companies, such as ByteDance, the owner of social media platform TikTok, are also significantly impacted by the DMA. 

Apple CEO Tim Cook said: "We're thrilled to introduce a new chapter in Apple innovation. Apple Intelligence will transform what users can do with our products — and what our products can do for our users. Our unique approach combines generative AI with a user's personal context to deliver truly helpful intelligence. 

"And it can access that information in a completely private and secure way to help users do the things that matter most to them. This is AI as only Apple can deliver it, and we can't wait for users to experience what it can do." 

How does the DMA impact Apple?

The DMA mainly impacts iPads and iPhones due to the interoperability requirement. However, there is still a spillover effect on other devices, such as Macbooks, due to features such as iPhone Mirroring working across different devices. 

One of the main ways that the DMA could also potentially impact Apple is by severely restricting the rollout and adoption of its flagship artificial intelligence technology in the EU. Apple's AI features have made big strides in the past few years, such as improving writing and communication features to proofread, rewrite and summarise text across Notes, Mail, Pages and a variety of third-party applications. 

Other changes include intuitive improvements to notifications, depending on which apps or chats on a user's device are the most active or frequently used. The company has also enhanced its images, such as Image Playground, which offers features such as Sketch, Illustration, and Animation. 

Furthermore, Siri has also been taken to the next level, with far better language-understanding features that make it more natural, personal, and contextually relevant.

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