Artificial intelligence has become the new gold standard of innovation in technology. Over the years, it has played a critical role in product development at Microsoft. AI technology has helped workers find work-life balance and provided recommendations for process improvements to managers. The chief product officer now hopes to take things a step further by positing that Microsoft and AI will soon dictate the entire user experience on Windows. What does this mean for its more than 1 billion users worldwide?
Microsoft and AI Focuses on Its Work With Qualcomm
The chief product officer did not detail how AI may shape the future of Windows. Even so, tech experts point to the existing work with Qualcomm as an indicator of the way forward. For example, Microsoft unveiled Project Volterra at the Build 2022 event. It then followed up with an official launch in October 2022. So, what exactly is Project Volterra?
The device features the Snapdragon platform, built by Qualcomm. It is a kit to facilitate testing Windows apps on a single device. Developers can also use it for the building and running of these apps. The compact device uses a neural processing unit, or NPU, to power AI-enhanced experiences. Finally, it even includes a cloud component.
Dedicated AI chips have become increasingly popular in modern devices, including the Surface Pro X which Microsoft created in partnership with Qualcomm. Tech experts believe that Microsoft and AI will continue to rely on the SQ1 chip.
Microsoft Is Considering a $10 Billion Investment in ChatGPT
Microsoft kicked off the year by generating speculations about its interest in ChatGPT, an AI tool created by OpenAI. Business analysts have evaluated the high-value deal as a win-win situation for Microsoft. It also represents a second round of investments; Microsoft previously poured $1 billion into the company.
So, what exactly is ChatGPT? It uses natural language processing to create conversations that appear remarkably real. While some professionals have cautioned about using the chatbot for essential tasks, creators worldwide have boosted its popularity by showing its real-time capabilities in their content.
Microsoft and AI Competition From Other Big Brands
The push for AI chips comes from the app environment fueled by iOS and Android devices. These apps have long used AI tools for everything from fitness to photo editing. Windows has not had as successful a foray into the app development arena outside its own work and productivity apps in 365. The Project Volterra device may change this by giving developers a much better environment to create AI-powered solutions.
When it comes to AI processing, Windows views Apple as its primary competitor. Qualcomm has assisted Microsoft in its efforts to compete by creating the Snapdragon 8cx Gen 3 system-on-chip, which is a direct answer to Apple's processor.
Intel powers several Windows PCs and has launched its AI-powered chip to one-up NVIDIA. The new Gaudi line comes from Habana Labs, which Intel recently acquired. It paid $2 billion for the acquisition and continues to invest heavily in the AI silicon market. Intel estimates the market's value at $25 billion by 2024.
Microsoft and AI Developments for Windows 11
Qualcomm and its Snapdragon product have brought new AI capabilities to the latest Windows operating system. Here are some of the AI-based features users may access:
- Background Blur: Microsoft makes it easy to blur or change the background for a more professional appearance during meetings.
- Voice Focus: Microsoft leverages AI to create a noise-free environment by filtering out background noises.
- Automatic Framing: Microsoft uses AI to set up professional quality framing for video conferencing.
- Eye Contact: AI technology makes it seem like you are constantly making eye contact with the camera, even if you look away to read notes.
Microsoft and AI Investments Continue To Deepen and Expand
Microsoft has embraced AI as a critical element of its existing and future product offerings. It posits that though people change the world, technology can facilitate that change and affect how they make changes. It has also invested heavily in the opportunities AI can bring to business and data. Consider the following examples:
- Azure AI provides special services for data scientists and developers who need to streamline operations.
- The Microsoft Intelligent Data Platform helps organizations achieve agility, boost productivity, and accelerate innovation through analytics.
- Microsoft facilitates the building of AI-powered organizations in multiple industries and sectors, such as government, health care, manufacturing, and energy.
- Microsoft has infused AI capabilities into its app offerings so that users can access these capabilities at even the most basic levels.
How Businesses Can Prepare for Microsoft and AI Advancements
Artificial intelligence will continue to play a critical role in business operations worldwide. Organizations that fail to adapt and anticipate new AI technologies will inevitably fall behind the competition. AI increasingly relies on cloud computing to process high levels of data and stay updated. Consequently, managers will need to prioritize cloud migration in the near future.
Businesses should also take into consideration the potential security risks associated with AI. Microsoft and other providers offer robust solutions for ensuring data safety; however, an extra layer of protection is always necessary.
Finally, companies should research Microsoft's AI offerings and risks to determine how they can benefit. Ethical dilemmas may arise from using AI in some applications, so companies should consider this carefully and plan for current realities and future changes in how people perceive the technology and its use.
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