OpenAI’s Mira Murati fires back at Elon Musk for describing her company’s new partnership with Apple as ‘creepy spyware’

The chief technology officer of OpenAI, Mira Murati, defended her company against Elon Musk’s criticism of their chatbot technology being integrated into Apple iPhones. During a discussion at Fortune’s MPW dinner in San Francisco, Murati acknowledged Musk’s opinion but stated that OpenAI prioritizes user privacy and product safety.

Apple recently announced a prominent partnership with OpenAI at its annual developer conference. This collaboration will allow Apple device users to utilize OpenAI’s AI technology for complex queries that Apple’s in-house AI may struggle to answer accurately. The integration will be done within Apple’s iOS operating system and can be used with various Apple services.

To address concerns about privacy, Apple has assured users that their data will not be shared with OpenAI. Additionally, OpenAI will not train its models using any user data from Apple.
Elon Musk, the CEO of Tesla and co-founder of OpenAI, initially supported the alliance but later became one of its harshest critics due to a power struggle. He strongly criticized the alliance during Apple’s WWDC conference, stating that he would prohibit employees at his companies from using any Apple devices, such as iPhones and Macs, that incorporate OpenAI’s technology into their operating systems.

Musk expressed concern about Apple’s lack of understanding regarding the handling of user data once it is handed over to OpenAI. He accused Apple of betraying their users’ trust. In a post on X (formerly Twitter), he wrote, “Apple has no clue what’s actually going on once they hand your data over to OpenAI. They’re selling you down the river.”

In response to Musk’s criticism, Murati, a representative of OpenAI, emphasized the organization’s commitment to user privacy and security. She emphasized their transparency with the public and stated that the main risk lies in stakeholders misunderstanding the technology.
OpenAI announced on Monday that Sarah Friar, former CEO of Nextdoor, has been appointed as its chief financial officer. Additionally, Kevin Weil, formerly a product development leader at Twitter and Instagram, has been named the new chief product officer.

Speculation arose in Silicon Valley that these hirings were a strategic move in preparation for a future initial public offering. However, OpenAI’s response to this was indirect, with Murati stating that the company is entering a new phase and that the new executives are bringing valuable skills and leadership.