Copilot will be successful long-term, even though it struggles with adoption now, says Microsoft

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Microsoft says its AI assistant model, Copilot, will be a successful product in the future, as for now, the Redmond-based tech giant is aware of its limitations.

At the Morgan Stanley Technology, Media, and Telecom 2024 conference, Jared Spataro, corporate vice president of Modern Work & Business Applications at Microsoft believes Copilot will be a great moneymaker for the Redmond-based tech giant over the long term.

However, investors will need to keep their expectations low, for now, as Microsoft is still dealing with adoption issues when it comes to the AI tool.

But for this group, I would say, my job here is to temper your expectations. Over the long term, we think this will be a great moneymaker for us

Jared Spataro

Spataro admitted that Copilot might somehow not be worth the $30/month price it currently has in Microsoft 365, when it comes to some versions of it, such as Copilot in Excel, but it’s more than worth it for other apps, such as Teams or Outlook.

So if you look at Copilot in Excel, like, we all can’t wait until it’s an Excel jockey and can do a lot, but it’s coming. It’s learning and people have very high expectations. Same is true of PowerPoint and it’s going to disappoint there because we’re still learning the commanding surface of Excel.

Jared Spataro

The Microsoft executive agrees that Copilot is having a bit of trouble with adoption: customers and organizations, especially, are having a hard time figuring out how to integrate the Microsoft Copilot AI into the equation.

People are definitely trying understand, who should I get this for? Is this for everyone in my organization? Is this for a certain segment or population? And it’s just based on hard facts. Are we saving enough in terms of time? Are we generating enough value? Previous Microsoft-commissioned research found Copilot testers worked 29 percent faster, and 77 percent that used it for two weeks found it indispensable.

Jared Spataro

However, Microsoft conducted studies showcasing that commercial customers, such as startups and SMBs can save up a great of money by investing in AI tools, such as Copilot. A study says that $1 invested in AI, generates a return of $3.5X, while another states that 47% of small business owners see AI as a game changer.

Even so, our survey clearly shows that users are somehow reticent to work with Copilot: If Copilot included fees or subscriptions, 46% of current users would stop using it.

But Spataro is optimistic about Copilot: in the future, the AI tool will be capable of sophisticated information retrieval and sophisticated task completion on all platforms currently available, and users will be more inclined to integrate it into their work.

It’s also worth mentioning that Copilot was available on Windows 10, and Windows 11, to more than 75 million users at the beginning of 2024, so this number has most likely increased since then.

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