Wedbush's Dan Ives Says Apple Has 'Best Installed Base In The World' For Its AI Future: WWDC A 'Key Moment' For Cupertino

Wedbush's Dan Ives believes that Apple Inc.'s AAPL installed user base of over 2 billion is the "best" in the world as far as its AI opportunity is concerned.

What Happened: Ives thinks Apple's upcoming Worldwide Developers Conference (WWDC) in June will be a "key moment" for Cupertino.

Ives thinks Apple will unveil a "key part" of its AI strategy at WWDC.

"I believe [it] ultimately goes to an AI App Store… which is going to be… developers, they're going to build apps," Ives said in an interview with Hankyung Global Market, adding that the services category is going to be a "huge opportunity" for Apple.

See Also: Can Gemini Read All Harry Potter Books At Once? Former Google Employee ‘Tried It’ And Here’s What Happened Next

Although Apple has been slow to adopt AI in its portfolio of devices and services, unlike its rivals Alphabet Inc.'s Google and Microsoft Corp., Ives believes Cupertino will take that leap with the iPhone 16 that is all set to launch in September this year.

"They will not be on the outside looking in when it comes to AI. This is the best-installed base in the world, and this is a key moment for Cupertino to unveil their AI strategy."

"Developers are the lifeblood of Apple. You're going to see Apple really focus on the services side, on AI… I think that's going to be a big focus at WWDC."

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Why It Matters: Apple has not been completely quiet when it comes to AI. The iPhone maker has quietly released multiple papers that aim at making its large language models faster, lighter and better than those from leading models like OpenAI's GPT-4.

This will allow Apple to offer on-device AI features on iPhones, which can help ensure the privacy and safety of users and their data.

In the interim, it could license Google's Gemini AI and rebrand it to something of its own as a stop-gap solution.

Deepwater Asset Management's Gene Munster thinks Apple AI could be a $33 billion-a-year opportunity, but a lot depends on how the Tim Cook-led company executes it.

It has also acquired AI startups to help it with its ambitions, with the most recent one being Canada-based DarwinAI.

Price Action: Apple closed at $175.04, up 4.33% on Thursday, according to Benzinga Pro.

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Read Next: Jeff Bezos’ Successor Andy Jassy Touts Generative AI As Tech’s Next Big Revolution In Amazon’s Shareholder Letter

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