Microsoft has released the new Windows 11 23H2 update, marking the official integration of its Copilot AI assistant on operating systems around the world.
The update, branded ‘Moment 4’ by Microsoft, brings a raft of new features including the much anticipated roll-out of 365 Copilot for enterprise customers.
The roll-out also includes updates for Microsoft teams, as well as some streamlining changes within Windows.
Windows 11 23H2 update: What you need to know
Microsoft’s Copilot is a generative AI assistant that users can interact with in a conversational manner to perform tasks within Windows.
Leveraging the power of OpenAI’s GPT-4 large language model (LLM), users can use simple text inputs to summarize, explain, and create content in a wide number of applications across the operating system.
Previewed in September 2023, this update means the Copilot AI assistant is now switched on in Windows by default.
Copilot is accessible through a dedicated Copilot button in the taskbar or by using the ‘Windows + C’ shortcut. This means users can get Copilot to perform system tasks such as opening apps, adjusting settings, or getting help on taking a screenshot.
Microsoft has been clear to highlight the sophistication of their flagship AI offering, such as Copilot’s ability to mimic a user’s writing style when generating emails.
Microsoft 365 Copilot is available to enterprise users for $30 per month, and provides full integration of its AI assistant within the Microsoft productivity suite with the ability to perform a wide range of application-specific actions.
For example, Copilot’s Excel integration allows users to give the assistant basic text prompts in order to generate formulae, provide analysis of charts and graphs, and highlight interesting data-points.
Furthermore, Copilot can also respond with helpful tips on how to use excel more efficiently, such as why a particular formula is best for performing a specific function.
Teams updates and additional streamlining
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Other changes in the latest Windows update include the replacement of Chat with the free version of Microsoft Teams. The collaboration platform has also received SMS integration for users with Android phones and is now pinned to the taskbar by default.
Microsoft also added a new ‘mini communications experience’ to Teams (free) that will allow users to chat, call, meet, and create a space for group collaborations from a single, compact window.
Further updates to Windows include improved backup functionality, a streamlined File Explorer, additional support for file types such as .rar files, more taskbar customization, AI-centered updates to Snipping Tool, Paint, and Photos, and boot to the cloud feature.
How to get the Windows 11 23H2 update
The new update shares the same code base as its previous version and will be available through the typical update channel.
To upgrade, users can open the settings app and navigate to the Windows Update tab and hit ‘Check for updates’.
Make sure you have turned on ‘Get the latest updates as soon as they’re available’ in order to ensure you get the Windows 11 Copilot with the update.
The 23H2 update is available to commercial customers through Windows Server Update Services (including ConfigurationManager), Windows Update for Business, and the Volume Licensing Service Center (VLSC).
However, a footnote on the blog post from Microsoft warns that “downloads in the VLSC and similar channels may be delayed”.
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Solomon Klappholz is a Staff Writer at ITPro. He has experience writing about the technologies that facilitate industrial manufacturing which led to him developing a particular interest in IT regulation, industrial infrastructure applications, and machine learning.