The Copilot key is coming (unfortunately)
Opinion

The Copilot key is coming (unfortunately)

Martin Jud
4.1.2024
Translation: Veronica Bielawski

It’s a fact: Microsoft will introduce the Copilot key this year. Copilot will replace the right Ctrl key and is set to become a central component of PC keyboards.

In 1995, Microsoft introduced the Windows key. Nearly three decades later, the Copilot key is making its debut. Microsoft believes the extra button will «empower people to participate in the AI transformation more easily», explaining, «The Copilot key joins the Windows key as a core part of the PC keyboard and when pressed, the new key will invoke the Copilot in Windows experience to make it seamless to engage Copilot in your day to day*.»

The new Copilot key will be included on new Surface devices as well as on devices from partner companies who decide to participate. According to Microsoft, many Windows 11 PCs that offer AI at the press of a key are set to be presented at this year’s CES.

My question is: was anyone even asking for this? The new key brings a disadvantage. Namely, it banishes the right Ctrl key from the keyboard, which anyone who types with the ten-finger system probably appreciates having. For this reason, it’s unclear how well the new key will be received and whether it’ll become as established as the Windows key. I, for one, am very sceptical and hope it won’t.

Do we really need a key for a function that requires you to have a Microsoft account? Even if I were to use the function regularly, I wouldn’t need a dedicated key for it – just as I don’t need an extra key for my browser. And I certainly use my browser more often than I’d ever use an AI assistant. But hey, why am I getting so worked up? After all, no one’s forcing me to buy a laptop or keyboard with the Copilot key. Besides, Copilot hasn’t yet been introduced in Europe due to the European Union’s Digital Market Act (DMA). In other words, it’ll be a while until devices here are equipped with the Copilot key (at the earliest in March).

  • News + Trends

    Still no Windows Copilot in Europe: Microsoft rolls out 23H2 update

    by Martin Jud

What do you think of a new key that robs you of another one?

Header image: Microsoft

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I find my muse in everything. When I don’t, I draw inspiration from daydreaming. After all, if you dream, you don’t sleep through life.


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