Apple is working on a processor dedicated to AI-related tasks, suggests a new report.
Dubbed Apple Neural Engine, the chip would improve the way the devices handle tasks such as facial recognition and speech recognition.
A source familiar with Apple's plan told Bloomberg that the AI-enabled processor would help Apple bundle more advanced features into devices like self-driving cars and augmented reality devices.
While Apple devices currently handle artificial intelligence processes through the main processor and graphics chip, the new chip would allow Apple offload those tasks onto a dedicated chip designed for artificial intelligence processing, improving the battery performance of the device.
Apple's AI chip is designed to make significant improvements to Apple products. The company even plans to use the chip on the iPhone and iPad, the source told Bloomberg.
Apple has even tested iPhone prototypes with the chip.
Apple has considered offloading facial recognition in the photos app, parts of speech recognition and the iPhone's predictive keyboard to the chip, the source added. The company is planning to offer developer access to the chip so that third-party apps can also lessen the tasks related to artificial intelligence.
Apple may discuss some developments in AI at its annual developer's conference in June, the same event where the company is expected to introduce iOS 11 and updated Mac laptops with faster chips from Intel.
"Two of the areas that Apple is betting its future on require AI. At the core of augmented reality and self-driving cars is artificial intelligence" said Gene Munster, former Apple analyst.