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30 Years Later: The Key to Microsoft’s New Windows Experience

Unlocking the era of the AI PC.
Emily Hill
Contributing Writer

Microsoft (NASDAQ: MSFT) is ushering in “the era of the AI PC” with a significant update to the Windows keyboard layout, introducing the Copilot key, the first change since the addition of the Windows key in 1994. This AI-powered key, located to the right of the space bar, is part of Microsoft’s broader strategy to integrate AI across its products. The Copilot key, set to debut on new Windows 11 devices at CES, will serve as a shortcut to Microsoft’s AI Copilot service, aiding users in tasks like image creation, email writing, and text summarization.

Why it matters: This development marks the first alteration to the Windows keyboard in 30 years, highlighting Microsoft’s confidence in AI’s role in computing. The dedicated Copilot key signifies a shift towards a more personalized and intelligent computing future, as Microsoft aims to seamlessly weave AI into Windows, from the system to the silicon and hardware.

  • Positioned to the right of the space bar, the Copilot key replaces the menu key and serves as a launch key for the Windows Copilot experience. This experience includes a chatbot for answering queries and performing actions within Windows.
  • Microsoft’s hardware partners will showcase Windows 11 computers featuring the Copilot key at the CES technology conference. The key’s presence on new PCs will be a focal point, underlining its importance in Microsoft’s AI strategy.
  • While their push into AI services has not yet translated into a boost in device sales, the introduction of the Copilot key could potentially influence consumer behavior, creating pressure to upgrade as Microsoft evolves its AI proposition.
  • Microsoft has spent the past year integrating AI technology, leveraging GPT-4, into major products, including Windows, Office, Bing search, security software, and customer and finance products.

Go Deeper –> Microsoft gives AI a place on the Windows keyboard – Axios

Microsoft’s new Copilot key is the first big change to Windows keyboards in 30 years – The Verge

Microsoft Adds AI Key in First Change to PC Keyboard in Decades – Bloomberg

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