Home Review Microsoft Copilot Pro review: Office joins the genAI revolution

Microsoft Copilot Pro review: Office joins the genAI revolution

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Microsoft Copilot Pro review: Office joins the genAI revolution

Microsoft’s $20-per-month Copilot Pro subscription provides you entry to Microsoft’s Copilot AI assistant in Office. That means Copilot will help you write Word paperwork, work with Excel spreadsheets, create PowerPoint shows, put collectively Outlook emails, lay out notes in OneNote, and reply questions on no matter file you have got open.That’s the hallmark characteristic of Copilot Pro: AI constructed into Office, lastly out there to anybody — not simply companies. But Copilot Pro presents much more, and Microsoft will quickly be pushing it to everybody by way of advertisements: The firm is already experimenting with Copilot Pro advertisements in Windows 11’s Settings app.So what precisely can Copilot Pro do, how good is it — and do you have to subscribe?Looking for the last word Windows PC e-newsletter? My free Windows Intelligence e-newsletter delivers all the very best Windows ideas straight to your inbox. Plus, you’ll get free copies of Paul Thurrott’s Windows 11 and Windows 10 Field Guides (a $10 worth) only for subscribing!Copilot vs. Copilot Pro vs. Copilot for Microsoft 365Copilot is the identify of Microsoft’s genrative AI-based chatbot. Think of it like Microsoft’s ChatGPT — it makes use of the identical underlying know-how as ChatGPT. (Microsoft initially launched it as Bing Chat in 2023, however the firm later renamed it “Copilot,” minimizing that Bing branding.)There are three completely different Copilots to concentrate on:
Copilot: The customary Microsoft Copilot is free. It’s constructed into Windows 11, and Microsoft is within the strategy of including it to Windows 10. You can entry Copilot on the internet and by way of the Copilot apps for Android and iPhone.
Copilot Pro: This provides further options to Copilot, together with the flexibility to make use of Copilot in Microsoft Office apps like Word — one thing customers of the free model of Copilot can’t do. It’s a paid subscription, and it’s supposed for customers or particular person professionals — not companies.
Copilot for Microsoft 365: This is the model of Copilot supposed for companies. It’s dearer than Copilot Pro, and it’s not simply built-in into Office apps — with Microsoft Graph, it may well faucet into all of a enterprise’s knowledge so you may have it write a Word doc primarily based on the contents of an e mail, for instance, or ask it for insights which may contain trying up data in a wide range of paperwork.
Chris Hoffman, IDG

Microsoft Designer generated this picture once I requested it to create “a surrealist painting of a boost in an AI art generation application.”

Copilot Pro: Price and availabilityMicrosoft fees $20 per thirty days for Copilot Pro. That will get you a person subscription. Since Microsoft doesn’t supply a free trial, you’ll should decide to a minimum of one month to attempt it.To use the Copilot Pro options in apps like Word, Excel, and PowerPoint, you’ll want a Microsoft 365 subscription ($100 per 12 months for a household of as much as six individuals or $70 per 12 months for a person) on prime of the Copilot Pro worth. That $20 per thirty days price matches the month-to-month worth of ChatGPT Plus. In plenty of methods, Copilot Pro is Microsoft’s reply to ChatGPT Plus — and probably the most compelling side is integration in Office apps.Microsoft fees companies $30 per person per thirty days for entry to Copilot for Microsoft 365, so Copilot Pro sits within the center, between Microsoft’s free client Copilot and its dearer Copilot for Microsoft 365 product.Like Copilot itself, Copilot Pro isn’t but out there worldwide. As of now, Microsoft says it’s “available in Austria, Australia, Brazil, Canada, Switzerland, Germany, Spain, France, United Kingdom, India, Italy, Japan, Mexico, New Zealand, and the United States.” Microsoft plans to launch Copilot Pro in additional nations quickly.Copilot Pro: OptionsMicrosoft advertises the next options as a part of Copilot Pro:
Copilot in Microsoft 365 apps: You’ll get entry to Copilot integration in Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Outlook, and OneNote. This isn’t only a chat sidebar — you may ask Copilot to create a doc for you, or you may request it make modifications to the present doc.
Priority entry: Microsoft says you’ll get precedence entry to the GPT-4 and GPT-4 Turbo massive language fashions (LLMs) throughout peak instances. If you already use Copilot, this precedence entry will make sure you spend much less time ready for a response and extra time getting issues finished.
AI picture creation boosts: Microsoft Designer allows you to generate AI pictures with OpenAI’s DALL-E 3 picture technology mannequin. You can create and edit pictures even quicker with 100 “boosts” per day for Designer.
Microsoft additionally introduced Copilot Pro will embrace a “Copilot GPT Builder” that can allow you to “build your own Copilot GPT — a customized Copilot tailored to a specific topic.” It sounds just like ChatGPT’s upcoming reminiscence characteristic. However, this characteristic isn’t out there at launch.These options are all cross-platform: You additionally get precedence entry to Copilot within the Copilot cell apps and on the Copilot web site, for instance — not simply in Copilot in Windows. Copilot options are additionally out there in Microsoft 365 apps for Windows, Mac, and iPad.The worth proposition right here is easy. Faster entry to Copilot’s regular chat expertise and speedier AI picture creation are good, and also you’ll know whether or not you need them primarily based on how a lot you utilize the options — and the way usually you end up ready.So, how nicely does the Copilot integration work in Office apps? That’s the trillion-dollar query. Chris Hoffman, IDG

I requested Copilot write from the angle of an AI assistant pleased with its Word expertise. Here’s the doc it created from that quick immediate.

How Copilot Pro works in Microsoft 365 (a.okay.a. Office) appsCopilot is nicely built-in into Office — it’s a lot better than the Copilot integration in Windows! For instance, right here’s the way it works in Word:
When you begin a brand new doc, you’ll see a “Draft with Copilot” field asking you what you need to create.
On every new line of textual content, you’ll see a Copilot icon you may click on to have Copilot begin writing for you.
The ribbon bar has a “Copilot” button proper subsequent to the “Editor” button, letting you open a Copilot sidebar that allows you to work with the present doc. You can ask it to write down for you, summarize the present doc, or change issues — maybe you need to shortly change the formatting or type of the doc.
You can right-click some textual content and choose Copilot > Rewrite with Copilot within the context menu to rewrite textual content.
While the Copilot sidebar constructed into Windows 11 is proscribed in how a lot it may well combine with Windows — it may well’t do a lot past change a number of settings — Copilot is a lot better at working with Office paperwork. It can put collectively PowerPoint shows and even generate AI pictures for them by way of Microsoft Designer. It can write and format paperwork. It can attain into an current doc and alter the type or formatting nevertheless you want. Chris Hoffman, IDG

Copilot Pro will leap in prepared to assist everytime you create a brand new doc.

How helpful is Copilot Pro in Office?Copilot Pro is similar essentially unusual chatbot you is perhaps conversant in: It’s passed by the identify Bing Chat, and it’s the identical underlying mannequin as ChatGPT. It’s the Copilot you already know — however built-in into Office. And the Office integration is nicely finished!But how helpful will that be? As a journalist, I write as a human for people — I’m not going at hand over my writing to Copilot anytime quickly. Believe me, if Copilot have been penning this overview, you’d discover it not being as much as the identical high quality!Still, I’ve discovered Copilot Pro helpful at instances. I needed to undergo a reasonably lengthy, dense Word doc not too long ago, for example. I used to be in a position to ask Copilot questions within the sidebar about what the doc mentioned, and it was quicker than utilizing Ctrl+F to look and attempt to guess the place issues have been buried in it. Likewise, I’ve used Copilot to alter formatting shortly, eliminating some tedium. Chris Hoffman, IDG

The Copilot sidebar provides you a handy strategy to discover data and collect insights from the present doc.

In the previous, I’ve had an ideal expertise utilizing AI instruments like this for extra customary formal writing. Do it’s worthwhile to write a typical grievance letter, inquiry, or one thing related with all of the formal boilerplate? Copilot could be nice for that.You can have Copilot Pro make a PowerPoint presentation for you, too — however do you have to? Copilot Pro will do higher if you give it extra detailed directions, going backwards and forwards, asking for modifications, and having it work on small tedious issues that may take time. Its work most likely gained’t be as much as snuff if you happen to give it a one-sentence immediate and count on it to create a business-ready doc or e mail. Chris Hoffman, IDG

Microsoft Copilot created this presentation to point out off its PowerPoint expertise, full with AI-generated artwork. Once once more, this was created from a single quick immediate.

Copilot Pro is, nevertheless, very “disconnected” in comparison with the best way Microsoft has proven off Copilot for Microsoft 365 previously. You’re working together with your present Office doc. You can’t have it collect data from a number of paperwork and emails, as you may with the business-focused Copilot for Microsoft 365.Free options to Copilot ProIt’s value noting that you are able to do plenty of what Copilot presents without spending a dime, if you happen to like:
The Copilot chat expertise is free for everybody. You entry Copilot within the built-in Copilot sidebar in Windows, on-line and by way of cell apps, as famous earlier.
Microsoft Designer presents free AI picture technology for everybody with a Microsoft account.
You can ask questions on a PDF by opening it in Microsoft Edge. Use the Copilot sidebar in Edge to ask questions in regards to the open PDF doc — or the present internet web page you have got open.
Microsoft Edge’s Copilot sidebar additionally has a handy “Compose” pane that can provide help to draft emails, paragraphs, thought lists, and full weblog posts. You can use this device without spending a dime and paste the content material into an Outlook e mail or Office doc.
You can do loads with the free model of Copilot. The advantage of Copilot Pro is in dashing every part up, with precedence entry to the chatbot and quicker picture technology, together with integration into the Office apps you utilize. Chris Hoffman, IDG

The Copilot sidebar in Microsoft Edge has some handy text-writing instruments anybody can entry without spending a dime.

Is Copilot Pro value it?At $20 per thirty days, Copilot Pro is similar worth as ChatGPT Plus. It makes use of the identical underlying know-how. You get AI picture technology instruments with the DALL-E 3 mannequin in each. The Microsoft Office integration might be a killer characteristic for many individuals, who ought to significantly think about switching from ChatGPT Plus to Copilot Pro.Whether it’s value it for you is so that you can determine. How a lot do you utilize AI chatbots? Would you profit from an AI chatbot built-in into Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Outlook, and OneNote? If you’re unsure, yow will discover out for $20 for the primary month.If you spend plenty of time performing repetitive duties, digging for knowledge in Office paperwork, or placing collectively boilerplate paperwork, Copilot Pro may very well be an enormous productiveness increase and time-saver.But Copilot Pro isn’t going to write down the following nice American novel — or my subsequent Windows Intelligence e-newsletter. Still, it shines when built-in with Office — that is probably the most helpful I’ve ever seen it. If the Windows staff at Microsoft takes pointers from the Office staff, the AI integration in a future model of Windows might be spectacular.Get much more Windows insights, ideas, and methods with my Windows Intelligence e-newsletter — three issues to attempt each Friday. Plus, get free copies of Paul Thurrott’s Windows 11 and Windows 10 Field Guides (a $10 worth) for signing up.

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