- Copilot, an AI-powered assistant, is integrated into Windows 11, enabling tasks like taking screenshots, managing settings, and summarizing web content.
- MS Paint receives significant upgrades, including support for layers and background removal, with a Paint Cocreator feature in development.
- The Snipping Tool gains AI features for text recognition and redaction.
- Windows 11 File Explorer gets an improved home interface with larger thumbnails and native support for RAR and 7-zip files.
- Users can access these updates through the Windows Update settings in Windows 11.
Microsoft is ushering in a series of transformative updates for Windows 11, aimed at elevating the user experience and bolstering productivity. These changes encompass a broad spectrum of enhancements, from the introduction of Copilot, an AI-powered assistant, to the revitalization of age-old applications.
Copilot: Your AI Sidekick
One of the standout additions is the integration of Copilot, a sophisticated AI assistant. Microsoft detailed the changes coming to Windows 11 in a blog post on Tuesday and revealed that the Copilot feature is finally making its way to the platform. Copilot introduces a revamped Bing Chat feature to Windows 11, granting users the ability to perform diverse tasks with ease. This includes tasks like taking screenshots, managing Bluetooth and Wi-Fi settings, and generating summaries of web pages.
What sets Copilot apart is its utilization of generative AI responses. It swiftly provides users with text and image-based answers to their queries. Activating Copilot is straightforward; users can simply press the Windows key and C or click on the dedicated Copilot icon on the taskbar.
MS Paint Reinvented
The venerable MS Paint application, cherished by many, is undergoing a substantial transformation. Microsoft is bestowing MS Paint with the power of layers, a feature previously reserved for advanced graphic design tools like Adobe Photoshop.
Moreover, MS Paint now includes an integrated background removal tool, simplifying the process of isolating objects or subjects in images. Additionally, Microsoft plans to introduce a Paint Cocreator preview for Windows Insider testers. This feature empowers users to craft unique images by inputting text prompts. Notably, the usage of this feature is accompanied by a credit system, indicating that it may not be entirely free to use.
AI Empowers Snipping Tool
The Snipping Tool — Microsoft’s built-in screenshot and markup tool for Windows 11 — is also receiving a significant AI-powered makeover. Two new features are introduced: text recognition and redaction. Text recognition employs optical character recognition (OCR) to identify and extract text within screenshots. Meanwhile, redaction empowers users to discreetly obscure sensitive information, such as email addresses or phone numbers.
File Explorer Gets a Facelift
Windows 11 File Explorer is being treated to a refreshed home interface. This new interface boasts larger thumbnails for favorites and recently accessed files and documents. Additionally, users can now open RAR and 7-zip files natively, eliminating the need for third-party compression applications.
Getting the Updates
To access these transformative updates, Windows 11 users can conveniently navigate to Windows Update within the settings app. Here, they can enable the “Get the latest updates as soon as they’re available“ option. Once enabled, these updates will be systematically rolled out to compatible devices.
These comprehensive enhancements underscore Microsoft’s unwavering commitment to refining the Windows 11 experience. By integrating AI features and providing more efficient tools for tasks ranging from graphic design to screenshot management, Microsoft aims to empower users and streamline their computing experience.