Microsoft unveils Copilot pricing, adds new generative AI capabilities

Microsoft unveils Copilot pricing, adds new generative AI capabilities

The updates introduced at the company’s annual Inspire conference also include a new Sales Copilot and two new copilot abilities for Micosoft's Dynamics 365 marketing suite.

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At its annual Inspire event for resellers Tuesday, Microsoft offered new details on how it is rolling out generative AI capabilities across its product line, announcing that Copilot will be available to customers for $30 per user per month for Microsoft 365 E3, E5, Business Standard and Business Premium customers.

Copilot is a generative AI assistant that sits across the company’s suite of business productivity and collaboration apps and can automate tasks and create content — including analysing Excel data, designing PowerPoint presentations, and summarising Teams meetings.

Microsoft has said this pricing will come into force when Copilot becomes “broadly available,” but is yet to share a timeline for when that might be. Currently, 600 global enterprise customers are signed up to its early access program.

Microsoft also announced the expansion of Bing Chat, through the launch of Bing Chat Enterprise, and introduced Visual Search.

Bing Chat Enterprise is a work-specific version of the company’s AI-powered chat feature that it launched February of this year. The offering allows users to ask questions and receive answers from GPT-4, the OpenAI Large Language Model (LLM) that Microsoft has invested heavily in since the end of 2022.

“Just like Bing Chat, Bing Chat Enterprise is grounded in web data and provides complete, verifiable answers with citations, along with visual answers that include graphs, charts and images, and is designed in line with our AI principles,” according to a blog post by Microsoft executives Yusuf Mehdi and Jared Spataro.

To ensure data is protected, Bing Chat Enterprise does not save any chat data or use it to train the underlying LLM model. Furthermore, Microsoft has “no eyes-on access,” meaning no one, including the company, is able to view the data used to power the tool.  

Bing Chat Enterprise is rolling out in preview from today and is included at no additional cost in Microsoft 365 E3, E5, Business Standard and Business Premium, the company said, adding that it will be available as a stand-alone offering for $5 per user, per month in the future.

Additionally, Bing Chat will soon allow users to leverage OpenAI’s GPT-4 model for Visual Search. By uploading a picture to Chat, users can search for similar content or prompt Bing to tell them more about the context of an image or answer questions related to the picture.

Visual Search in Bing Chat has already started to roll out now via desktop and the Bing mobile app. Microsoft has said it is working to bring the Visual Search to Bing Chat Enterprise in the future.

Sales Copilot added to Microsoft 365 and Dynamics 365

Microsoft has also added a new role-based copilot, dubbed Sales Copilot, as part of its Microsoft 365 and Dynamics 365 offerings.

Not to be confused with the previously released Microsoft 365 Copilot and the Dynamics 365 Copilot, this new flavor of the generative AI assistant is designed for sellers, Microsoft said, adding that the assistant can be accessed via tools used by sellers, including Outlook, Teams, Dynamics 365 Sales.

The new Sales Copilot is “effectively a rebranding of Viva Sales with some added generative AI features," according to Gartner analyst Jason Wong.

Meanwhile, Dynamics 365 Copilot offers generative AI features as part of the enterprise edition of the business applications, and includes Sales Copilot, Wong noted, adding that other editions of Dynamics 365 will require licensing Sales Copilot, such as to run with Salesforce and other third-party systems.

Some of Sales Copilot’s capabilities include creating contextual emails based on Dynamics 365 Sales data, providing summaries after combining customer data from Outlook, Teams and Dynamics 365 before sales meetings, and providing real-time tips during Teams meetings, said Emily He, corporate vice president of business applications at Microsoft.

Sales Copilot can also connect to other CRM systems like Salesforce via connectors, He added.

Sales Copilot has been made generally available both as a stand-alone subscription and included as part of customers’ existing Dynamics 365 Sales Enterprise and Premium licenses at no additional cost, the company said.

Additionally, the company said that it was combining customer data and customer journey orchestration capabilities inside its Dynamics 365 Customer Insights offering to help enterprises get all relevant marketing data in one platform.

Enterprises will be able to use the Copilot inside Dynamics 365 Customer Insights in order to orchestrate contextually relevant customer journeys across marketing, sales, and service via natural language prompts, He said.

The same Copilot can also be used to style email, forms, and event registration pages to perfectly match brand guidelines using natural language, He added.

These new Copilot capabilities will be in preview starting next month before being made generally available in September this year, the company said, adding that the new features will be included as part of the 365 Customer Insights subscription.

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