‘Creepy spyware’: Elon Musk threatens to ban all Apple devices from his companies over Open AI integration

The latest artificial intelligence announcement from Apple has tech mogul Elon Musk threatening to ban their devices from his companies as an “unacceptable security violation.”

On Monday, the house that the late Steve Jobs built claimed to be “Setting a new standard for privacy in AI” as the company introduced the world to Apple Intelligence. However, integration with OpenAI’s ChatGPT set off warning bells for the billionaire entrepreneur who took to his social media platform X drawing a line in the sand.

“If Apple integrates OpenAI at the OS (operating system) level, then Apple devices will be banned at my companies. That is an unacceptable security violation,” wrote Musk Monday. “And visitors will have to check their Apple devices at the door, where they will be stored in a Faraday cage.”

Tesla’s CEO didn’t limit his threat of restrictions either as he responded directly to Apple CEO Tim Cook’s post concerning the press release referring to the “next chapter in AI” as “personal, powerful, and private,” by asserting, “Don’t want it. Either stop this creepy spyware or all Apple devices will be banned from the premises of my companies.”

In the release, Apple Intelligence was sold as combining “the power of generative models with personal context to deliver intelligence that’s incredibly useful and relevant.”

Cook himself stated, “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,” he claimed. “This is AI as only Apple can deliver it, and we can’t wait for users to experience what it can do.”

Musk filed suit earlier this year against ChatGPT’s developer OpenAI, the Microsoft-backed company that he’d helped found in 2015, as well as CEO Sam Altman, claiming that they had breached their contract by becoming a “closed source, maximum-profit company effectively controlled by Microsoft,” when it was meant to be a non-profit seeking to benefit humanity.

While the release specified that users of iOS 18, iPadOS 18, and macOS Sequoia would have control over when data would be transmitted to ChatGPT, Musk remained brutally skeptical.

“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!” he slammed. “Apple has no clue what’s actually going on once they hand your data over to OpenAI. They’re selling you down the river.”

Prior to launching his latest artificial intelligence startup, xAI, Musk signed on to an open letter in March 2023 with prominent figures in the field, including Apple co-founder Steve Wozniak, calling for a six-month pause in development to allow society to catch up.

“AI systems with human-competitive intelligence can pose profound risks to society and humanity, as shown by extensive research and acknowledged by top AI labs,” the letter said in part.

To hammer home his disfavor for the announced integration of ChatGPT with Apple products, Musk posted a meme illustrating how the relationship between the two companies was essentially handing consumer data directly to OpenAI.

Kevin Haggerty

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