What is Microsoft 365 Copilot? – What we know so far

What is Microsoft 365 Copilot?  – What we know so far
Amaar Chowdhury Updated on by

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Microsoft has announced Copilot, their GPT-4 powered Office automation tool. In a world filled with artificial intelligence powered software such as ChatGPT and Midjourney, yet another is set to join the fray.

Here’s what Satya Nadella, Microsoft CEO, had to say about Microsoft 365’s Copilot.

With our new copilot for work, we’re giving people more agency and making technology more accessible through the most universal interface – natural language.

You might be wondering what Microsoft’s involvement in AI is, and you might be surprised at how central they’ve been to recent advancements in natural language models. The company are actually responsible for backing OpenAI, the company behind GPT-4.

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What is Copilot?

Copilot is an artificial intelligence workflow automation tool that will be able to be embedded into Microsoft 365. Here are a few key things that it can do:

  • Generate summaries of emails in Outlook
  • Create Powerpoints based on a single prompt
  • Analyse trends in Excel
  • Generate summaries of meetings in Teams
  • Draft content in Word

Copilot effectively allows you to automate how you interact with the entire Microsoft 365 suite. You can check out Microsoft’s video for a quick-fire example of what the service can do.

It looks like the tool will allow you to automate individual processes in your everyday workflow, and we’re excited to see how this changes not only technology, but the evolution of creativity, art, business, and even commerce.

When is Copilot going to be released?

We don’t yet have a confirmed release date for Copilot. Microsoft said in a blog post that 20 customers are currently making use of the technology and that it will be rolled out further ‘in the coming months’. However, they haven’t been any clearer than this. We will be bringing you any updates as and when we have them.

Copilot uses artificial intelligence to ‘command apps’

One of the most impressive features we’ve seen showing off Copilot’s AI is how it can command apps. Aside from being used to ‘create, summarize, analyze, collaborate and automate,’ it can also ‘command apps.’ The examples provided by Microsoft include animating Powerpoint slides, translating Word documents into Powerpoint slideshows, and even learning new skills.

What will Copilot be able to do in Microsoft Word?

Just like with ChatGPT, Copilot will be very capable of generating natural-sounding language in text form. This will have a tonne of uses in Microsoft Word especially.

For example, it will be able to jump-start your creative process, rather than having a blank page as your starting point, you can prompt Copilet to generate a draft or something, be it a formal letter, a blog post, or a summary, and then personalise it from there.

Read more: ChatGPT alternatives

These LLMs are not infallible, meaning that is it very likely that the best way to use Copilet will be as a tool for your own writing, rather than as the writer itself. This means you should still look over and change the text it generates. Its utility lies in the speed it can create these starting points, jump-starting whatever you need writing.

Frequently Asked Questions

Is GPT-4 used by Microsoft 365 Copilot?

GPT-4 is one of the LLMs used by Copilot, and is surely instrumental in the natural language elements used throughout the tool.

Is Microsoft 365 Copilot available yet?

Copilot has not yet been released to the public yet, and Microsoft hasn’t actually announced exactly when the tool is going to hit our computers, though we know we will be hearing more about it in the coming month.