Microsoft has begun building an AI chat interface straight into its single most important software product, the company said Tuesday. The tool will perform tasks like summarizing documents, suggesting music, offering tech support for your PC and answering questions you might ask a search engine or AI chatbot.
Windows Copilot is scheduled to arrive in a preview version of Windows in June via an icon in the task bar that looks like a loop of blue ribbon. Clicking it opens a chat interface sidebar where you can type questions or prompts like “enable dark mode” and click buttons to take actions.
It’s a major new step in Microsoft’s embrace of artificial intelligence technology. Previously the company had built it into its Bing search engine and Edge web browser, but Windows is used by millions more people and for many more hours a day.
“We are bringing the copilot to the biggest canvas of all, Windows,” CEO Satya Nadella said at its Microsoft Build developer conference.
And the change reflects a growing seriousness in modern AI. Google has begun building AI directly into its most important services, like search, Gmail, and Docs. Adobe on Tuesday released a beta version of Photoshop that uses AI to generate new imagery. AI remains experimental, but no longer is AI on the periphery of the world’s biggest tech products.
Microsoft also is building its copilot technology into its Office suite of productivity tools.