Microsoft to bring Copilot key to Windows keyboard, a dedicated AI button

Microsoft’s 2024 vision includes the Copilot key on PCs, replacing the menu key after nearly three decades. This AI-centric change aims to integrate Windows Copilot seamlessly, providing quick access to its features. Microsoft plans to unveil the Copilot key on new Windows 11 PCs from ecosystem partners starting this spring.

Microsoft to bring Copilot key to Windows keyboard, a dedicated AI button
A Microsoft logo is seen in Los Angeles, California, U.S. June 14, 2016. Credit: Reuters/Lucy Nicholson/File Photo

For decades, the humble keyboard has remained largely unchanged. The familiar layout, established in the typewriter era, has served us well, but it hasn’t kept pace with the technological revolution around it. Enter Microsoft’s bold move: the AI key. This dedicated button on select Windows 11 PCs marks a significant shift in how we interact with computers, bringing the power of artificial intelligence to our fingertips.

The Copilot Key: Windows Embraces AI with a Dedicated Button

The year 2024 is shaping up to be a major turning point for Windows, as Microsoft throws its full weight behind artificial intelligence (AI). One of the most visible signs of this shift is the introduction of a dedicated Copilot key on new laptops and PCs. This key, replacing the underused menu key, offers quick access to Microsoft’s AI assistant, Windows Copilot, marking the first major change to the Windows keyboard layout in nearly 30 years.

A Chatbot at Your Fingertips

Pressing the Copilot key launches Windows Copilot, a ChatGPT-like chatbot that can answer your questions, perform actions within Windows, and even help with creative tasks. Think of it as a friendly helper living inside your computer, ready to assist you with anything you need. If Windows Copilot isn’t available in your region yet, the key will simply launch Windows Search.

Credit: YouTube/Windows

This AI key is more than just a shortcut; it’s a symbol of Microsoft’s commitment to weaving AI into the fabric of Windows. Throughout 2024, we can expect a “significant shift toward a more personal and intelligent computing future,” as Microsoft executive Yusuf Mehdi puts it. This includes a Windows refresh focused on new AI features, AI integration in various software and services, and even branding Microsoft Edge as the “AI browser.”

The Year of the AI PC: What to Expect?

Microsoft is betting big on AI, and the Copilot key is just the beginning. Here’s a glimpse of what we can expect in the coming year:

  • New Surface devices with the AI key: Microsoft’s own Surface line-up, including the rumored Surface Pro 10 and Surface Laptop 6, will be among the first to sport the new key.
  • AI-driven Windows refresh: Expect a revamped Windows experience with AI-powered features like smarter multitasking, personalized recommendations, and proactive assistance.
  • AI across Microsoft’s software and services: From Office to Teams to Azure, expect AI to become increasingly integrated into Microsoft’s offerings, enhancing productivity, creativity, and collaboration.

The Copilot key is a tangible reminder that AI is no longer a futuristic concept; it’s here, and it’s changing the way we interact with our computers. This shift towards AI integration promises to make our computing experiences more personalized, efficient, and even enjoyable. While some might find the idea of AI assistants intrusive, others will embrace the potential for increased productivity and creative possibilities. Ultimately, the AI key is a sign that the future of computing is AI-powered, and Microsoft is leading the charge.

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Source(s): The Verge

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