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Apple reportedly paid OpenAI zero dollars for its ChatGPT partnership

Instead, Apple offered OpenAI something much more valuable.
Apple reportedly paid OpenAI zero dollars for its ChatGPT partnership Credit: Justin Sullivan / Getty Images

How much money was exchanged between Apple and OpenAI in its new partnership? Zero dollars.

According to Bloomberg's Mark Gurman, Apple isn't paying OpenAI anything for bringing ChatGPT to Siri and other apps. Nor is OpenAI paying Apple for unprecedented access to iPhone, iPad, and Mac users. Instead, mass distribution is the valued commodity, not cash.

"Apple believes pushing OpenAI’s brand and technology to hundreds of millions of its devices is of equal or greater value than monetary payments," anonymous sources told Gurman. But Apple is benefitting too, or else this wouldn't be a deal worth considering, even if it is $Free.99. Partnering with OpenAI gives Apple the chance to offer splashy generative AI capabilities to consumers and keep investors happy. Right around the time Apple mentioned ChatGPT at WWDC, Apple stock prices spiked on Nasdaq.

The partnership ostensibly gives OpenAI access to billions of Apple devices. But Apple may have gotten the better end of the deal, since OpenAI pays Microsoft for hosting ChatGPT on its Azure cloud servers. "The more people use ChatGPT, the more OpenAI’s expenses rise. And the integration into Apple devices — while optional for users and limited to the company’s recent products — threatens to add significantly to the computing budget," said Gurman.

Furthermore, Apple is still in talks with Google over adding Gemini as a chatbot alternative. Plus, at WWDC, Apple announced its own AI technology Apple Intelligence. This collection of tools power AI features on iOS 18, iPadOS 18, and macOS Sequoia, like organizing your notifications, voice recordings and automated transcriptions, and drafting and summarizing emails.

So, OpenAI might be the buzziest company around, but Apple CEO Tim Cook drives a hard bargain.

Topics: Tech, Apple, OpenAI

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