Microsoft held an event on September 21st, 2023 to announce several new AI services, software updates, and hardware devices. Here are the key announcements and also an array of diverse feedback from our Academy event held on September 25th, 2023. You can watch the full length showcase above.
CoPilot for Windows 11
Windows CoPilot will roll out starting on the 26th September including over 150 new features, but perhaps the biggest and most talked about feature is Windows CoPilot leveraging AI to unlock a ton of potential.
CoPilot AI assistant is now deeply integrated across Windows apps and the web browser Edge. Users can invoke CoPilot from the desktop or with their voice to get help with tasks.
Allows using a pen to write in any text field across Windows with handwriting automatically converted to text. Great for quickly jotting down notes.
Copy, Paste, Do
When you copy text, CoPilot will make suggestions of actions you can take such as creating a calendar event from copied info.
New haptic feedback for Xbox controllers when playing PC games.
Captioning and voice typing updates to aid those with disabilities.
Completely redesigned with AI capabilities to sort photos and create collections/stories.
AI integration allows copying just the text from an image snip.
This release shows Microsoft's commitment to integrating AI and natural user interfaces into Windows to improve productivity. CoPilot's expanded availability is a major stepping stone toward the vision of an AI assistant for everyday tasks. The ability to take action on copied text and write anywhere with a pen should help speed up workflows.
Bing and Edge AI Updates
We've had ChatGPT for almost a year now, and Microsoft have made it easier to access using the Edge & Bing browsers, and they've made it far more efficient and advanced. The new updates include:
Personal Shopping Assistant
Bing can now serve as a shopping advisor, asking questions to understand what you need and providing tailored recommendations. Helps guide users to the right products.
DALL-E 3 Integration
Bing Image Creator is being upgraded to Open Ai's latest DALL-E 3 model. This will enable higher resolution, more realistic images to be generated from text prompts.
The DALL-E 3 model drove plenty of enthusiasm at our community call as many of our members anticipated huge potential for image and graphic design. One of the coaches saying...
"DALL-E 3 makes graphic design accessible - even for non-designers"
AI-generated images in Bing will now have labels indicating they were created by an AI system, not a person. Provides transparency.
Personalized Web Results
Bing can tailor web results based on your previous conversations and interests. Concerning for privacy if users don't opt in.
Bing Chat for Enterprise
Businesses can use Bing Chat with additional security, compliance, and controls. Allows confidential company data to be used by the AI while keeping it protected.
New capability to search Bing using images in addition to text. Helps find information about visual content.
Image Creator for Enterprise
Businesses can generate images with AI in Bing Chat. Useful for marketing and design needs.
One of the topics that arose during our discussions was questioning the accuracy and validity of Bing Chat responses. A few members seemed on the fence about using responses as trusted sources. One member saying...
"The quality of the data that is returned by AI must still be vetted for accuracy. It would be a fallacy to accept the output as the truth."
Overall, Microsoft is rapidly improving Bing and Edge with more intelligent AI to assist with day-to-day tasks and provide personalized recommendations tailored to each user. The focus on transparency around AI content and enterprise-level security is notable. However, some of the personalization features could raise privacy issues that may make users uncomfortable.
Microsoft 365 CoPilot
General Availability for Enterprises
CoPilot will be generally available for enterprise customers starting November 1, 2023. It is currently being tested with select preview customers.
New Microsoft 365 Chat Experience
A new Microsoft 365 Chat experience was demonstrated including fantastic key features. CoPilot Understands user context and data across Office apps. It can complete multi-step workflows like researching locations, creating summaries, and generating text. Makes recommendations based on synthesizing info from emails, documents, meetings.
CoPilot Lab was announced as a way for users to learn prompting skills to get the most value from the AI assistant.
Consumer preview of CoPilot will be launching soon. The AI assistant will be available across both work and personal contexts.
New AI Capabilities
New AI capabilities shown in Word, Outlook, and PowerPoint such as generating text in the user's unique writing style.
Open AI Integration
Integration with Open Ai's DALL-E models shown in Designer app to edit images.
One of the Collab365 coaches asked the community about their concerns around extensive data tracking and privacy. Which drove mixed responses from both a business and personal stand-point with one of our members stating...
"I'm happy for Microsoft to do what they do. We are all being tracked, and its difficult to navigate the web without leaving a footprint anymore. We just have to trust that Microsoft are in compliance with the right laws and regulations"
Microsoft 365 CoPilot looks extremely promising for streamlining complex workflows and automating business productivity. The new chat experience provides a natural way for users to delegate tasks to the AI. Learning resources like CoPilot Lab will be important for leveraging the technology. Making CoPilot available to average consumers could be a game-changer if executed responsibly.
New Surface Laptops
Surface Laptop Go 3
New lightweight 2.5 pound, 12.4" laptop focused on portability. Up to 88% faster than previous model with all day battery life. Available October 3, 2023 starting at $599.
Surface Laptop Studio 2
Most powerful Surface device ever with 13th Gen Intel Core i7 processor and NVIDIA GeForce RTX GPU options. Features a pull-forward 14.4” touch screen. Available October 3, 2023 starting at $1599.
Adaptive Haptic Touchpad
The new touchpad on Surface Laptop Studio 2 provides haptic feedback and can adapt to people with disabilities, like responding to inputs from a prosthetic hand. Most inclusive touchpad available.
Windows Studio Effects
Laptop Studio 2 is the first device with an Intel Neural Processing Unit and Windows Studio Effects for AI-powered creation tools.
Both new laptops offer latest Intel processors, Thunderbolt 4 ports, fast charging, and excellent displays primed for AI-powered creative work.
The Surface Laptop Go 3 and Laptop Studio 2 look like impressive portable devices for on-the-go AI assistance with CoPilot. The adaptive touchpad sets a new standard for inclusive hardware. Combined with the AI updates, the new Surface laptops provide powerful tools for productivity and creativity.
Microsoft is moving full steam ahead with integrating AI into its software and hardware products. CoPilot looks like it could be a game-changing digital assistant for consumers and enterprises. The Windows, Bing, Edge, and Microsoft 365 updates demonstrate how AI can improve common tasks and workflows. The new Surface devices provide the perfect canvas to experience the AI innovation. While there are some potential privacy concerns with personalized AI, the transparency around AI-generated content is a positive sign. Overall Microsoft is positioning itself at the forefront of making AI accessible in our everyday lives.
Overall, our members seemed excited to get hands-on experience with CoPilot after it rolls out. The Collab365 coaches enjoy keeping their fingers on the pulse for Microsoft technology, and discussing it with their engaged community. We'd love you to share your opinion! Join the discussion over on the Collab365 Academy Forum.