Science & Technology

Microsoft Presents Copilot+ PCs

Last Monday, May 20, Microsoft presented a new category of personal computers with artificial intelligence functions.

Microsoft Presents Copilot+ PCs

Currently, the mentioned technology giant, based in Redmond, Washington, is committed to embedding machine intelligence into the digital products that make up its virtual ecosystem. The successful implementation of these efforts will help strengthen the company’s position in the context of its ability to compete with such rivals in the area of innovative solutions as Apple and Google.

Microsoft Chief Executive Satya Nadella presented a new development, which was described as a Copilot+ personal computer, at an event held on Monday at the technology giant’s campus in Redmond. He also stated that his company and some other brands, including Acer and Asustek Computer, will sell the mentioned devices.

The technology giant presented a new product at a time when its share price index was approaching historically record levels. The corresponding result is related to the rally on Wall Street. The mentioned dynamic is the upshot of large-scale expectations that artificial intelligence will become the driving force behind significant growth in the financial performance of large technology companies, including Microsoft and its competitors.

The new personal computers, which have integrated AI, will go on sale on June 18. The cost of these devices will start from $1,000. It is known that personal computers, which will emerge on the market in less than a month, can perform more tasks related to artificial intelligence without using cloud data centers.

Processing of data by machine intelligence directly on a personal computer allows Copilot+ to enable a feature called Recall. The mentioned function tracks all processes performed on the device, including, among others, web browsing and voice chats. Artificial intelligence saves a kind of action history, which is then stored on a personal computer. As a result of this solution, the user is allowed to receive data on the processes being performed even months later. The function will be especially useful in cases where the consumer has forgotten about certain actions within the framework of interaction with the device and especially needs to reminisce about the relevant information.

Also on Monday, Microsoft presented its Copilot voice assistant. As part of the event, this tool was positioned as a real-time virtual coach for a user who plays the Minecraft video game.

Yusuf Mehdi, head of Microsoft’s consumer marketing unit, said the technology giant expects to sell 50 million personal computers with artificial intelligence over the next year. Also during the press conference, he said that faster AI-based virtual assistants that function directly on devices of the mentioned category will be a significant reason for users to make decisions about updating their PCs for the first time in a long period.

Data from the research company Gartner shows that last year the global supply of personal computers amounted to 242 million. This figure has fallen by about 15% compared to the result for 2022. If compare the mentioned data with Microsoft’s expectations regarding sales of personal computers with artificial intelligence over the next year, then the share of the corresponding devices will account for about a fifth of all PC shipments in 2025, provided that consumer demand for products in this category does not significantly change until then.

Ben Bajarin, an analyst at Creative Strategies, says that people just need to be convinced that the experience of interacting with the device itself justifies the new Copilot+ segment machines.

The probability that the integration of artificial intelligence will become an effective marketing and subsequently commercial factor in terms of the impact on the dynamic sales of personal computers is far from minimal. New opportunities and solutions based on machine intelligence for a certain part of customers are likely to become a decisive factor in the context of deciding to upgrade a PC. At the same time, it is still difficult to form an unambiguous vision of exactly what the impact of personal computers with artificial intelligence will be on the overall state of affairs in the PC market from the point of view of a commercial indicator. It is possible that in this case, a scenario that can be described as revolutionary in a conditional sense will not be implemented. At the same time, the integration of artificial intelligence into personal computers as a category of goods in itself is something like a historically significant event and it is almost obvious that the introduction of AI will have systemic and long-term consequences, but so far it is difficult to determine the scale of the corresponding effect.

Consumer interest in devices, in addition to the price factor, also directly depends on the capabilities offered and the degree of compliance with the level of global technical development in a specific period. This means that a personal computer that performs a minimum from a wide list of tasks that are not particularly difficult and problematic for other PCs for many years will have a very weak position in terms of competitiveness. Currently, AI belongs to the category of advanced technologies and is perceived by many as the main driving force of global progress in the foreseeable future. For this reason, personal computers with artificial intelligence in the context of their production concept are already a competitive product with prospects for positive market results.

The new Microsoft Copilot+ PC marketing category, which focuses on the implementation of AI capabilities, has certain similarities with the line of thin-form Windows Ultrabook laptops. In 2011, Intel, together with other personal computer manufacturers, promoted the mentioned devices to compete with Apple’s MacBook Air.

Microsoft executives also said that OpenAI’s GPT-4o, which debuted last week, will soon be available as a part of Copilot.

Moreover, the technology giant has unveiled a new generation of its Surface Pro tablets and Surface Laptop. These devices are equipped with Qualcomm chips based on the Arm Holdings architecture.

Microsoft also presented the Prism technology. This technology is designed to enable software written for Intel and AMD chips to function on microcircuits developed based on the Arm architecture.

Microsoft has demonstrated its new devices in action. The company paid special attention to comparing the capabilities of its products with the real characteristics of Apple’s developments. The software, purposed for photo editing tasks and designed by Adobe, demonstrates a higher speed of operation on Microsoft devices. It is worth noting that in the era of the market, which has become something like an additional dimension of activity for companies, the so-called comparative characteristics have become especially important. In the context of competition, which is very intense in the technological area, the capabilities of a certain company’s device are evaluated, among other things, in the context of comparison with those capabilities offered by similar products of other brands.

As for the efforts of Microsoft’s competitors in the artificial intelligence industry, in this case, it should be mentioned that in the first half of the current month, Apple presented a new chip focused on artificial intelligence. Analysts expect that the mentioned microcircuit will be used in laptops in the future. The new M4 chip has a large neural engine, which is an important part of it, designed for the computing necessary to implement artificial intelligence functions such as generating text materials or visual content in the form of images. Tim Millet, vice president of platform architecture at Apple, said that the performance level of the new microcircuit and its neural engine exceeds that of any similar processor in a personal computer with AI today.

It is worth noting that for decades the PC market has been dominated by processors developed by Intel. During this period, Qualcomm and other manufacturers of lower-power Arm components tried to compete in the mentioned market with Windows.

Qualcomm Snapdragon X Elite chips are equipped with a neural processor, which is designed to accelerate the functioning of apps focused on artificial intelligence, including, for example, Microsoft Copilot software.

The company, headed by Satya Nadella, is currently seeking to strengthen its position in the so-called AI race. This aspiration of the technology giant is absolutely logical and natural since ignoring artificial intelligence is what can be symbolically described as moving toward a dead end. Currently, AI is the main advanced technology with significant opportunities for use in various spheres of activity and even greater potential, up to the wildest assumptions that it will be able to transform human civilization in many dimensions of its existence, including economic, political, social, and cultural.

In the context of competition in the artificial intelligence industry, Microsoft pays special attention to the development of AI tools that consumers are ready to access through paid formats of interaction with the company. The close partnership with OpenAI has allowed the technology giant to achieve significant results in competing with Google.

Last week, OpenAI and Google presented new products based on artificial intelligence. In this case, the so-called dueling AI technologies are meant. As part of these solutions, artificial intelligence can respond to user requests with voice and take breaks in its speech, which is a hallmark of realistic voice conversations faced by digital assistants based on machine intelligence.

Google has also implemented several artificial intelligence features into its Internet search engine. In this case, it means the introduction of AI into the processing of requests from users and the generation of lists with the necessary information materials.

Personal computer manufacturers, that run on Windows, have recently been facing increasing pressure from Apple. This tendency is related to the fact that the iPhone developer released its own chips based on Arm solutions and abandoned the use of Intel processors. Apple’s microcircuits guarantee Macs a longer autonomous operation time and a higher level of performance compared to competitors.

Serhii Mikhailov

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Serhii’s track record of study and work spans six years at the Faculty of Philology and eight years in the media, during which he has developed a deep understanding of various aspects of the industry and honed his writing skills; his areas of expertise include fintech, payments, cryptocurrency, and financial services, and he is constantly keeping a close eye on the latest developments and innovations in these fields, as he believes that they will have a significant impact on the future direction of the economy as a whole.