Microsoft Reduces Usefulness of Copilot on New Copilot Plus PCs

Microsoft Reduces Usefulness of Copilot on New Copilot Plus PCs

Earlier this week, Microsoft introduced its new line of Copilot Plus PCs. These computers feature a unique addition: a dedicated Copilot key on the keyboard. This marks the first significant update to Windows keyboards in 30 years. However, currently, the primary function of this key is to open a Progressive Web App (PWA) version of Copilot.

Unlike the previous versions of Copilot, which were integrated into Windows, this new PWA version does not have the ability to control Windows 11 settings or function as a sidebar. It’s essentially just a web app. Additionally, Microsoft has removed the keyboard shortcut for Copilot on these new PCs, so the WINKEY + C combination no longer does anything.

Many users, including myself, hoped that the new Copilot key would offer more versatile functionality, similar to the Windows key. The idea was that it could be used in combination with other keys to create shortcuts for apps or even AI-powered features within Windows. This would significantly enhance its usefulness compared to just launching a PWA.

Microsoft has not provided a detailed explanation for why they shifted from an integrated Copilot experience to a standalone web app that lacks the ability to control Windows settings. According to a recent blog post by the Windows Insider team, “We’re also evolving the Copilot experience on Windows as an app that will be pinned to the taskbar. This enables users to get the benefits of a traditional app experience, including the ability to resize, move, and snap the window – feedback we’ve heard from users throughout the preview of Copilot in Windows.”

Microsoft believes that this change will allow them to “more agilely develop and optimize” the Copilot experience. This suggests that we might see future updates that make this transition seem more logical. For now, the new Copilot key will take the place of the menu key (application key) on the keyboards of new Copilot Plus PCs. Microsoft has also pinned the Copilot app to the taskbar, meaning that users don’t necessarily need to use the dedicated key to access it.

Despite the current limitations, there is potential for the Copilot key to evolve. If Microsoft listens to user feedback and enhances its functionality, it could become a powerful tool for launching applications and utilizing AI features within Windows. The current implementation is just the beginning, and we can hope for more integrated and versatile uses in the future.

For now, though, users will need to adapt to the changes and see how the Copilot key and app develop over time. Microsoft’s decision to pin the Copilot app to the taskbar shows their commitment to keeping it easily accessible, even if the dedicated key’s current functionality is limited. This approach might streamline the development process and lead to quicker improvements based on user feedback.

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In summary, Microsoft’s launch of the Copilot Plus PCs with a dedicated Copilot key represents a significant change in Windows keyboard design. While its current function is limited to launching a web app, future updates may unlock its full potential, making it a more useful and integral part of the Windows experience. For now, users can look forward to seeing how Microsoft continues to develop and enhance the Copilot experience.

Microsoft Reduces Usefulness of Copilot on New Copilot Plus PCs

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