Apple Inc. (AAPL) AI Brand Just Got Stronger Thanks to New Talent Recruit, Says Gene Munster

It's a key "win" for Apple in cherry-picking Google's head AI executive John Giannandrea, whose "credibility" speaks volumes.

Former head of Artificial Intelligence (AI) and Search of Google John Giannandrea is now joining the big Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) machine, and technology guru Gene Munster sheds light on what it spells out for Apple to recruit “more AI talent.” To put it bluntly, “It’s a win.”

After all, this is an industry that is not brimming with AI talent- and here, Apple’s new recruit offers not only his AI expertise, but likewise “credibility,” which Munster points out is absolutely “critical in recruiting.” The research analyst believes that Giannandrea joins Apple for 3 p’s: “projects, pay, and privacy.” At Apple, the AI whiz may now have the capacity to dedicate himself to more passion projects, where Giannandrea can have the opportunity to “build something new.”

As Apple will one day toss out touchscreen and iOS in favor of interfaces powered by artificial intelligence, including augmented reality wearables, Munster anticipates Giannandrea has high odds to be set to task here. Likewise, Munster expects any artificial intelligence roles regarding AAPL’s autonomous vehicle program (PAIL) should be handed to Giannandrea.

Ultimately, “Talent follows talent, and John Giannandrea will no doubt help to build Apple’s AI brand and enhance future recruiting efforts. His shared vision on privacy is good news for a company who claims to be the vanguard of user security. In the meantime, Google will maintain its strength in AI, given they are still an ‘AI first company’ and have tremendous AI and deep learning horsepower with their Google Brain and DeepMind teams. Jeff Dean, the founder of Google Brain, has taken over as the head of their AI department in a ‘reshuffling’ making AI a more central part of their business. Will Google employees follow in Giannandrea’s footsteps? There will probably be a few, but the competition is fierce, and this will not be the last major AI trade,” Munster surmises, looking for Gianandrea to “bolster Apple’s overall AI prowess.”

TipRanks indicates the big AAPL machine has a solid bullish backing on the Street. Out of 29 analysts polled in the last 3 months, 16 are bullish on AAPL stock while 13 remain sidelined. With a return potential of 11%, the stock’s consensus target price stands at $190.55.

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