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Microsoft Corporation is currently implementing a significant AI revolution across its services. After its collaboration with OpenAI to integrate GPT-4 into Edge and the introduction of its proprietary AI assistant, Copilot, the tech giant is now addressing something that has remained unchanged for the past three decades: the Windows Key or Start button on the Windows keyboard.
In a recent announcement, Microsoft unveiled its most extensive AI transformation for Windows 11 by incorporating Copilot AI into its Windows Keyboards. The new Copilot key will be positioned to the right of the space bar and launch the Windows Copilot integrated into Windows 11. Copilot is an AI-powered chatbot that delivers responses to user-generated queries, like ChatGPT.
At the upcoming CES technology conference, Microsoft’s hardware partners will present Windows 11 computers, including the Copilot button. Over time, it is expected that this feature will become obligatory. Users will be able to acquire the initial devices featuring the Copilot assistance key starting this month.
Interestingly, replacing the traditional Windows key is the biggest change to the Windows keyboard since Microsoft modified the layout in 1994 when the company introduced the Windows/Start key. The company positions this change as a pivotal step toward integrating AI into Windows keyboards, aligning with its vision of bringing a more personalized and intelligent computing future.
Microsoft envisions seamless AI integration across the Windows ecosystem—from the system to the silicon to the hardware. Yusuf Mehdi, Microsoft’s head of Windows and Surface, said, “This will not only simplify people’s computing experience but also amplify it, making 2024 the year of the AI PC.”
Notably, this is just the beginning. Throughout 2023, Microsoft has been committed to integrating its AI assistant, Copilot, into various services, and the introduction of the Copilot key is merely one facet of broader AI-driven changes scheduled for Windows in 2024. In response to user feedback, Microsoft anticipates further changes, particularly for Windows PCs.
As part of its AI advancements, Microsoft Copilot has entered a collaboration with Suno, an AI music creation platform. This collaboration enables Copilot to generate AI-composed songs based on simple text prompts, expanding its capabilities into music composition. Users can now use Microsoft Edge to create personalized songs, customizing them to their preferences.
Moreover, Microsoft is actively involved in a Windows “refresh” that showcases new AI capabilities, integrating AI into various facets of its software and services. Reflecting its commitment to AI advancements, Microsoft has also rebranded its Edge browser as ‘AI Browsers.’