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Everything for AI: How Microsoft is revamping the architecture of Windows PCs

Everything for AI: How Microsoft is revamping the architecture of Windows PCs
Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella had a number of innovations in store at Microsoft’s developer conference Build.
Hand on it: OpenAI (CEO Sam Altman, left) and Microsoft (head of technology Kevin Scott, right) work closely together.

After Google I/O, the next developer conference of a tech giant was on the agenda this week. And as with Google, almost everything at Microsoft Build revolved around artificial intelligence. An overview of the innovations that the Windows company presented.

Copilot+ PCs

To make Windows PCs fit for the AI ​​era, Microsoft is giving them a new architecture that is specifically intended for applications in the field of artificial intelligence. In concrete terms, this initially means a step in the same direction that Apple has also taken with its Mac computers: it is saying goodbye to Intel chips and is focusing on ARM-based processors, which are also found in smartphones.

Microsoft manager Yusuf Mehdi said at the presentation that, according to its own tests, the new PCs are 58 percent faster than the current MacBook Air with M3 chip and have a longer battery life. While Apple develops its M-series processors itself, Windows computers will rely on Qualcomm for chip systems.

The first manufacturers to produce Copilot+ PCs include Acer, Asus, Dell, HP, Lenovo and Samsung. But Microsoft itself also announced corresponding devices with the Surface Pro and the Surface Laptop. The first Copilot+ PCs will be available from June 18th and – in the case of the Surface Laptop – will cost $1,000. New AI PCs with processors from Intel and AMD will follow at a later date.

Recall

The Windows operating system is also being spiced up with a good portion of AI. A new search function called Recall is intended to work like a photographic memory. “We set out to solve one of the most common problems we encounter every day – finding something we know we’ve seen before on our PC,” explains Microsoft.

With Recall, Windows records all information on the computer (including apps, web activities and even conversations in video conferencing applications) and tries to understand it and put it into the current context using AI models. To immediately counteract data protection concerns, Microsoft emphasized that the data would only be stored and evaluated locally on the respective device.

The goal in the computer industry has always been “to build computers that understand us, instead of us having to understand computers,” said Microsoft boss Satya Nadella. He feels that this vision brings us “closer to a real breakthrough.”

Copilot as personal assistant

Another innovation concerns Microsoft’s AI software Copilot. In the future, companies and developers will be able to create specially adapted copilots (“AI agents”) and use them as a kind of virtual employee. They can be created in the future Microsoft Copilot Studio.

As an assistant, the copilot can be used for completely different tasks. If requested, it can give live tips on how to deal with difficult situations in a computer game. To illustrate this, Mehdi showed how the copilot gives advice when playing Minecraft. This is made possible by the integration of the multimodal AI system GPT-4o.

In addition, the copilot is increasingly being integrated into applications such as Microsoft Teams under the name Team Copilot. In a meeting, it can act as a kind of additional participant and take on various tasks – such as taking notes.

Hand on it: OpenAI (CEO Sam Altman, left) and Microsoft (head of technology Kevin Scott, right) work closely together.
Image: APA/AFP/JASON REDMOND

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Hand on it: OpenAI (CEO Sam Altman, left) and Microsoft (CTO Kevin Scott, right) work closely together.
Image: APA/AFP/JASON REDMOND

Source: Nachrichten

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