Apple might be about to give AppleCare an AI boost — Company testing 'ChatGPT-like generative AI tool' called Ask to help advisors with queries

Apple advisor in front of an iMac
(Image credit: Apple)

Apple is reportedly testing a new AI tool to help AppleCare support advisors with queries, according to a new report. 

2024 is expected to be a big year for Apple in terms of AI upgrades coming to both the hardware and software that the company will ship later this year. However, this latest report seems to indicate that Apple sees potential for AI tools that can help its business run more efficiently behind the scenes as well. 

MacRumors reports this week that Apple “is internally testing a new ChatGPT-like generative AI tool that will enable employees to offer faster technical support going forward.” So what is this program? And how could it benefit customers?

Applecare AI? 

According to the report, Apple is testing a new tool dubbed “Ask” “that can automatically generate responses to technical questions they receive from customers.” The company “ recently launched a pilot program that provides select AppleCare support advisors with access” to the platform. 

While some companies have transformed (ruined) their customer service by replacing people with AI and chatbots, it seems Apple is instead using Ask to equip its human customer service agents with better responses. The report specifically notes “Advisors can then relay the info to customers in online chats or on the phone,” indicating humans will remain a primary part of the process. 

Ask can reportedly “automatically respond to a query with relevant information from Apple's internal knowledge base,” responses which advisors can rate as helpful or unhelpful as part of the testing. Advisors are also being encouraged to use Ask before trying other search methods or consulting a senior advisor. 

The news comes ahead of some hotly-anticipated AI upgrades coming from Apple in 2024. We’ve already heard that Apple is planning to completely revamp Siri, turning it into the ultimate virtual assistant using Large Language model technology. AI features could also be used to upgrade software including Apple’s iWork suite and Xcode. Apple is also expected to focus some of its hardware on AI this year. Both the A18 and M4 chips, which could debut later this year, are expected to get a major AI boost through an upgraded Neural Engine. Apple could announce its AI plans as early as WWDC 2024 with iOS 18. The A18 should feature in the next best iPhone, the iPhone 16, which we'd expect to be unveiled in September. 

Apple confirmed its major AI upgrades at its February earnings call, CEO Tim Cook revealing the company was “excited to share the details of our ongoing work in that space later this year."

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Stephen Warwick
News Editor

Stephen Warwick has written about Apple for five years at iMore and previously elsewhere. He covers all of iMore's latest breaking news regarding all of Apple's products and services, both hardware and software. Stephen has interviewed industry experts in a range of fields including finance, litigation, security, and more. He also specializes in curating and reviewing audio hardware and has experience beyond journalism in sound engineering, production, and design.

Before becoming a writer Stephen studied Ancient History at University and also worked at Apple for more than two years. Stephen is also a host on the iMore show, a weekly podcast recorded live that discusses the latest in breaking Apple news, as well as featuring fun trivia about all things Apple. Follow him on Twitter @stephenwarwick9