OpenAI in early talks to collaborate with Jony Ive on AI rival to the iPhone
The Japanese banking giant SoftBank is reported to be planning a $1 billion investment in the project.
That report indicates that OpenAI is working with LoveFrom, a design company founded by British designer Jony Ive. Ive was formerly responsible for various Apple designs but ended his contract with Cupertino firm in 2022.
Current design brainstorming meetings aim to produce a “natural and intuitive” way for users to interact with artificial intelligence. The Financial Times‘ sources stressed that details have not been finalized. They said that a formal partnership may not be announced for months, and that a product may not arrive on the market for years.
Few if any other details have been publicized, and it is unclear how closely the device will resemble or share features with modern smartphones. OpenAI and LoveFrom seemingly intend to match the convenience of the iPhone rather than any specific functions.
OpenAI is also set to obtain funding from the Japanese banking giant SoftBank and its founder, Masayoshi Son. OpenAI will receive more than $1 billion in funding through that agreement, according to the report. The chip manufacturer Arm, a company in which SoftBank holds 90% stake, could become involved in the deal as well.
None of the above parties have confirmed their involvement publicly. The Financial Times instead obtained its information from three individuals familiar with the matter.
OpenAI is gaining ground
OpenAI is best known for its AI model, OpenGPT, and its related chatbot, ChatGPT. The company recently announced upgrades to ChatGPT that will allow it to handle images, video, and audio in limited ways. The app is also gaining access to the internet.
Other reports from late August suggest that the recent popularity of OpenAI will help the firm approach $1 billion in revenue in the coming year.