Microsoft Previews AI Copilot for Windows Insiders

Microsoft’s Copilot app replaces Cortana and can integrate with apps or apply settings, among other things, through a chat-like interface.

In what many considered to be an inevitable move, Microsoft has rolled out an early version of its Copilot for Insiders (build 23493 or higher in the Dev channel). Most prominently, users can issue voice commands to change settings.

Windows Copilot is a standalone app that will replace Cortana, not the default search functionality. In the official announcement, Microsoft called this “centralized AI assistance” and it works much like the typical generative AI chatbot. It’s just right there on your sidebar now and can talk with your operating system and apps apart from the internet.

Some capabilities that were previewed include:

  • You can drag and drop a document, like a PDF file, and ask it to summarize it. It can also summarize an open webpage. This expands to translation, data comparison, and other tasks.
  • Any suggestions you ask for that can be arranged via settings can be tweaked directly from the action buttons right in the chat.
  • You can ask for music recommendations, and the integration with apps like Spotify will help you play music right from the Copilot app by launching Spotify and auto-selecting what you wanted to play.
  • Plugins further add to the overall capabilities of the app, for example, you can ask it to send something to someone in the Teams app, and it will do so.
  • Snipping Tool, Snap Assist, copy-paste, etc. are inbuilt functionalities of the app.

Once clicked to open, it will stay pinned on the side across apps. Aimed to turn any user into a power user, its capabilities range from day-to-day tasks to more nuanced application integrations.

See their demo here:

How to get it

You need to be a Dev Insider. Settings > Windows Update > Windows Insider Program > (Assuming you’ve enrolled, it’s free) > Insider settings > Dev. Note that the Dev channel is not recommended for general customers as the updates that are tested are fairly buggy sometimes. The Beta channel is more stable, to which updates are usually rolled out after a little bit of polishing. If you do join the Insider program and opt for its Dev channel, this will reinstall Windows (each channel is a separate operating system) and download the latest update, which will include the Copilot app.

By Abhimanyu

Unwrapping the fast-evolving AI popular culture.