Skip to main content

Digital Trends may earn a commission when you buy through links on our site. Why trust us?

Apple Intelligence+ could be coming, and it won’t be free

Apple showing the different devices that Apple Intelligence works on at the Worldwide Developers Conference (WWDC) 2024.
Apple

Apple Intelligence isn’t scheduled to hit iPhones, iPads, and Macs until later this summer, but the company is already reportedly planning to charge its users a monthly fee to access certain features, according to Bloomberg’s Mark Gurman.

He notes that while the basic features discussed during the AI system’s reveal at WWDC 2024 will remain free to users, the company is considering eventually implementing a program along the lines of “Apple Intelligence+” that could offer additional features and functionality for a monthly subscription, akin to what the company already does for iCloud.

Apple has been somewhat hamstrung by its own success as of late. Its devices last longer than ever, and even multiple release generations later remain capable of running the most recent operating systems. iOS 11, for example, will reportedly be able to use Apple Intelligence when it arrives with the release of iOS 18, iPadOS 18, and MacOS Sierra.

Combined with fewer significant design changes to the devices themselves in recent and an increasingly challenging economy, the company is having increasing difficulty convincing consumers to trade in their old gear for the latest and greatest it has to offer. Thus, Apple is looking to diversify its income streams — in the form of software subscription models.

This shouldn’t come as too much of a surprise to users. Apple already disclosed that it plans to take a cut of the subscriptions charged by its upcoming AI model partners, rumored to include Anthropic and Google (as well as those in the Chinese market, though sorry, Meta, not you) so it’s not a huge departure for the company to consider dipping into users’ wallets for premium Apple Intelligence functions.

Doing so would accomplish the same basic effect that Apple is trying to do with its growing stable of AI model partners. By diversifying its income streams, just as with recruiting multiple AI partners, Apple gives itself wiggle room to pivot should the need arise and, in this case, lessen the company’s reliance on convincing folks to buy new $1,400 smartphones every 18 months.

That’s not to say the company won’t still provide its users with incentives to trade up to the latest generation of hardware. As Gurman points out, while seven-year-old Macs will still be able to run the upcoming macOS Sierra, other features like Game Mode and iPhone Mirroring still need the newer hardware.

What’s more, the company has already disclosed that your Mac will need an M1 processor or newer in order to access the new AI features. There’s obviously no word yet on what precise form the potential subscription model could take, what it would offer, or how much it could cost.

Andrew Tarantola
Andrew has spent more than a decade reporting on emerging technologies ranging from robotics and machine learning to space…
Apple Intelligence acts as a personal AI agent across all your apps
Craig in front of a screen reading Apple Intelligence

During last year's Worldwide Developers Conference (WWDC) keynote address, Apple executives mentioned the phrase "AI" exactly zero times. Oh, what a difference a year makes. At WWDC 2024 on Monday, Senior Vice President of Software Engineering Craig Federighi revealed Apple Intelligence, a new AI system "comprised of highly capable large language and diffusion models specialized for your everyday tasks" that will impact and empower apps across the company's lineup of devices.

"This is a moment we've been working towards for a long time," Federighi said. "Apple intelligence is the personal intelligence system that puts powerful generative models right at the core of your iPhone, iPad, and Mac. It draws on your personal context to give you intelligence." The machine learning system promises to enable your mobile and laptop devices to "understand and create language, as well as images, and take action for you to simplify interactions across your apps."

Read more
Dell saved its best gaming laptop deal for after Prime Day
The Dell G16 gaming laptop.

Prime Day deals have already ended, but Dell keeps rolling out gaming laptop deals that catch our attention. Here's an offer that's going to be hard to refuse -- the Dell G16 gaming laptop with the Nvidia GeForce RTX 4060 graphics card for only $1,000, following a $500 discount on the device's original price of $1,500. We're not sure how much time is left before you miss the chance to take advantage of this bargain though, so we highly recommend proceeding with the purchase as soon as possible.

Why you should buy the Dell G16 gaming laptop
The Dell G16 gaming laptop is a fantastic choice for gamers who are sticking to a tight budget, because it will let you play the best PC games without breaking the bank. In addition to the Nvidia GeForce RTX 4060 graphics card, the device is powered by the 13th-generation Intel Core i9 processor and 16GB of RAM, which is the preferred minimum amount according to our gaming laptop buying guide. The Dell G16 also ships with a 1TB SSD, which is a lot of storage space for your video games, and with Windows 11 Home pre-loaded, you can start installing your favorite titles right after you unbox the gaming laptop.

Read more