I was talking to Friedman on a Teams call when he activated Copilot in the middle of our meeting to perform his AI-powered magic. Microsoft has a flashy marketing video showing the potential of Copilot, but having Friedman demonstrate it in real-time in Office apps and in Teams leads me to believe it will forever change the way we interact with software, creating documentation and finally how we work. . Copilot appears in Office apps as a useful AI chatbot in the sidebar, but it’s so much more. You might be in the middle of a Word document and it will pop up gently as you highlight an entire paragraph – the same way Word has a user interface prompt that highlights your typos. You can use it to rewrite your paragraphs with 10 new text suggestions for free browsing and editing, or you can ask Copilot to create the entire document for you.
“In our mind, this is a new way to compute, a new way to work with technology, and the most adaptive technology we’ve ever seen,” said Jon Friedman, vice president of design and research. Microsoft research said.
This adaptability is what sets it apart from Microsoft, which just pushed ChatGPT into an Office sidebar. Copilot doesn’t just provide a chatbot interface – you can use it to give commands to Office apps like Excel and PowerPoint. If you’re viewing a set of slides and want each title to be orange instead of blue, just ask Copilot instead of having to dig into PowerPoint’s features.
In Excel, you can ask Copilot to create pivot tables, create charts, or simply help you understand the rows and columns of data in front of you. “One of the ways we got started with Copilot was to help analyze and understand data,” says Friedman. “You can ask Copilot what it does with the data, you can get a chart from Copilot based on the trends that Copilot sees in the data, and you can insert those trends into a spreadsheet.” Excel even has a “show me” feature for Copilot, which will let this AI guide you through how it just completed an order so you can enhance your Office knowledge.