Apple May Charge For Apple Intelligence After Getting Users Hooked On AI

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Apple unveiled its AI plans at this year’s Worldwide Developer’s Conference, bringing a slew of new features to Macs, iPads and iPhones. Well, now it appears as if the company hopes customers will like the AI features so much that it can turn some of them into a paid subscription, according to a report from Bloomberg’s Mark Gurman. This is on top of the cut Apple will be receiving from companies it partners with to deliver AI.

Gurman says that the company believes there’s “an opportunity to turn AI features and other software into paid services.” However, Apple won’t start charging interested customers right off the bat. Instead, it’s hoping that over time it can start shuffling whatever AI features it thinks it can charge for into something along the lines of “Apple Intelligence+.” This is what the company does with several of its services, such as iCloud.

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The reason Apple is considering this monetization move is because it’s in search of more revenue as its hardware products are no longer seen as a reliable source of explosive growth. Gurman says that “getting average consumers to regularly upgrade to a new model is harder than it used to be.” The situation stems in part from the commitment the company has made to supporting its devices with updates for several years, alongside designs that have remained mostly the same since the iPhone X released in 2017.

It's worrying to see Apple try to continue to chase unicorn like growth, as this move might ultimately weaken the company’s position as it continues to rely more on revenue from services. Customers don’t choose Apple for its services; they enjoy the hardware and software and how it all works together in the company’s ecosystem. The subscriptions to services come after the hardware sale, not the other way around. The picture should be clearer once AI makes its debut in Apple’s offerings later this year.