Microsoft’s new Copilot Pro brings AI-powered Office features to the rest of us.

Microsoft’s new Copilot Pro brings AI-powered Office features to the rest of us.

Microsoft first launched its AI-powered Office features for businesses in November, but just two months later the company is already offering them to consumers. Copilot Pro is launching today as a $20 monthly subscription that provides access to AI-powered features inside Office apps like Word, Excel, and PowerPoint alongside priority access to the latest OpenAI models and the ability to build your own Copilot GPT.

If you’re already a Microsoft 365 Personal or Home subscriber then the extra $20 per month (per person) subscription will immediately unlock Copilot in Office apps on Mac, Windows, and iPad. These features include the ability to generate entire PowerPoint slide decks from a chatbot-like prompt, and inline Copilot experiences in Word to rephrase paragraphs, generate text, and summarize documents. Copilot will also appear in Outlook.com to help you reply to emails or generate new ones, and a preview version is available in Excel to analyze data, generate graphs, and much more.

Most of the features that have been available to businesses for the past couple of months will be available to consumers, with the big exception of being able to summon Copilot to generate a PowerPoint deck based on a Word document. Because the consumer version isn’t powered by Microsoft’s Graph technology, this functionality isn’t available just yet.

Beyond Office integration, Copilot Pro also includes access to the latest OpenAI models, improvements to the Image Creator from Designer (formerly Bing Image Creator), and the ability to build your own Copilot GPT.

If you’re not a Microsoft 365 subscriber then you could subscribe to just Copilot Pro to get priority access to GPT-4 Turbo inside Copilot. You’ll get faster performance during peak times and the ability to toggle between models soon. Image creation using OpenAI’s DALL-E models will also be improved with a new landscape image format and improved image quality with Copilot Pro. The subscription will also soon include a new Copilot GPT Builder that lets you create a custom Copilot GPT — similar to the version launched for businesses last year.

Microsoft is aiming this new Copilot Pro subscription at its Copilot power users, in much the same way that OpenAI offers its own subscription to ChatGPT with priority access and the latest models. “There’s a lot of demand from those power users and they want more rapid access to the latest models, they want faster performance, and they want creativity tools,” says Divya Kumar, global head of marketing for search and AI at Microsoft, in a discussion with The Verge.

These Copilot Pro features are likely tempting for power users, but you will need to also subscribe to Microsoft 365 Personal or Family to get any of the Office-related Copilot features across the web and in Office apps. All of these Copilot Pro features will also be available on the web, in Windows or Mac apps, and on mobile. There are also more Copilot Pro features on the way, much like how Microsoft has been continually improving Copilot (formerly Bing Chat) over the past year.

“Given that pattern we’ve been in, that rolling thunder, you can expect we’re going to do the exact same thing for Copilot Pro,” says Kumar using a metaphor for the AI bombardment we’ve seen from Microsoft in recent months. “It’s already coming in with a lot of features and functionality on top of Copilot… we want to continue to bring an additional premium value and we’re going to very quickly start to do that as well.”

Microsoft is also opening up its Copilot for Microsoft 365 offering to more businesses today. This launched with a 300-seat minimum for larger enterprise users last year, but Microsoft is removing that limitation and letting most of its business customers sign up for a $30 per user, per month subscription today. You can read more about that right here.

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