Microsoft has announced a new subscription package, Copilot Pro, which is designed to give individual consumers access to the company’s AI tool – and it’s powered by the same language model that brings ChatGPT to life.
Access to the technology has also been expanded beyond the company's trial program, and is now open to any business that wants to use it. But what is Microsoft's Copilot Pro, who can use it, and how much does it cost? In this short-but-sweet guide, we cover:
What Is Copilot Pro?
Microsoft has announced a new AI subscription package this week, called Copilot Pro – which the company has said is geared towards individuals rather than businesses.
Before this, Microsoft had only released Copilot to businesses as part of an Early Access Program largely made up of Fortune 500 companies. Now, the Pro version is available for the average person to download and use in their workday.
Copilot Pro, Microsoft says, provides a “single AI experience” running across all of your devices and applications.
Along with access to the AI tool within Microsoft apps, you’ll also get access to GPT-4 Turbo “during peak times for faster performance” and enhanced AI image creation capabilities with Image Creator from Designer.
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How Much Does Copilot Pro Cost?
Copilot Pro currently costs $20 per user, per month for a subscription. However, you will need an existing Microsoft 365 Personal or Family account to use Copilot Pro, as it can’t be just bought as a standalone AI tool to use with any program.
Although it doesn't quite fulfill the same purpose, it's a lot cheaper than some of the AI-powered content generation tools out there, such as Jasper. Considering you'll have access to GPT-4 Turbo, it's pretty good value for money.
How to Use Microsoft Copilot Pro
You can use Copilot Pro today by purchasing a subscription from Microsoft. As we’ve just covered, Copilot Pro costs $20 per user, per month at the moment, which is roughly in line with premium generative AI subscriptions offered by competitors like Anthropic's Claude AI.
Once you’ve purchased a subscription, you’ll be able to use Copilot in Microsoft Word, Excel, and various other Microsoft apps. The Windows Key + C is the keyboard shortcut that brings up Copilot at present.
If you purchase a subscription and open a Word document, for example, you could ask Copilot to draft you a blog post rather than write it yourself. In Excel, you could ask it to create a chart or graphic based on the data you’ve provided.
As with most generative AI tool, working out how to use Copilot is pretty intuitive – just make sure your prompts are clear and as unambiguous as possible.
Can You Use Copilot for Free?
It’s not possible to use Copilot Pro for free – you’ll have to pay the subscription fee, which is the same price as a subscription to ChatGPT Plus.
You can, of course, access Copilot for free on the web if you want to see what the chatbot is made of, although it won’t be nearly as useful as the paid version you can use inside your Microsoft applications. The same goes for Copilot for Bing, which is accessible via the search engine.
Remember, if you’re looking for free AI tools, there are plenty of Copilot alternatives, such as Bard, which has a free version available powered by Gemini Pro.
Microsoft Expands Copilot Access to More Businesses
Along with a new individual/consumer-facing product, Microsoft has also expanded access to copilot to small businesses. So far, the software has only been available to a select few companies that participated in the early access program.
“Today we are excited to announce that Copilot for Microsoft 365 is now available for organizations of all sizes — with no seat minimum” one section of the blog posts states.
It’s unlikely to unseat ChatGPT as the world’s favorite AI tool just yet, but this marks an important expansion of access for millions of businesses who want a simple AI solution that integrates into the apps they use every day without a fuss.