5 ways Windows Copilot needs to improve for Windows 12 in 2024

Copilot in Windows
(Image credit: Microsoft)

When you look back at 2023 for tech, it may be hard to think of anything else than AI. Indeed, the platform has become a behemoth in how artificial intelligence can supercharge methods such as creating images, transcribing podcasts, and more.

The platform allegedly caught Apple off guard, and they’re now catching up. Microsoft, however, has already built its AI take called Copilot, into Windows 11. Reachable from a sidebar, you can ask the assistant to toggle certain features, generate images for you, and much more.

Granted, while this has superseded assistants like Microsoft’s own Cortana and Apple’s Siri, we’re still in the very early days of AI. There’s so much potential that Copilot can achieve for users on Windows — so with this in mind, here are five ways that it can do just that.

Generational Convenience

File Explorer with tabs in Windows 11 2022 update

(Image credit: Microsoft)

An AI should be a companion that can help at any opportune moment. Most of us have experienced a moment when we’ve tried to rename a bunch of files to put them into the right album or folder. Yet this is mostly a manual job, and it can take valuable hours to rename so many files. For Copilot, this could be an instant win — imagine asking the AI to go to a certain folder, and ask it to rename the hundreds of images within. In moments, the files are renamed, and, if the AI wants to show off, it attaches them to an email, ready to send.

It’s that kind of convenience that can help elevate assistants like Copilot, instead of pushing a notion that users have, that it can simply generate images and give you information about certain events. Having this new assistant in Windows take up jobs like this could help justify it to many who may be hesitant to use the AI — it can become your companion for convenience, rather than being known as an all-seeing, all-knowing feature on a sidebar.

Accessible on other devices

A man holding the Microsoft Surface Duo 2

(Image credit: Microsoft)

Microsoft’s CEO, Satya Nadella, has long pushed the notion that Windows is a service — that it should be accessible on as many devices as possible. The same should apply to Copilot but with the added benefit of knowing that it’s you. Granted, it may help that Copilot can be accessed in different places already, such as Bing. Yet to have it remember your past queries to build up a knowledgeable history could result in more accurate task completions from Copilot.

So let’s see this be made available as an app on iPhone and Android — but don’t stop there Microsoft. Have Copilot be made available as an app on Google’s Webstore for its Chrome web browser — extend that to Opera and Firefox too. Go even further — have Copilot be made available as an option on smart speakers like Alexa and Sonos. Have the AI be tied to your Microsoft account, so wherever you access Copilot, it will remember what you’ve requested of it before.

It gives Copilot the advantage of being easily accessible on most of the devices you own whilst making you wonder how it is as an integrated part of Windows, especially if you're looking at a new PC in the holiday sales.

A supercharged OOO

Copilot for Microsoft 365

(Image credit: Microsoft)

Copilot is already impressive in what it can do for Bing, Paint, and other apps — but it can go even further when it comes to your workflow. It’s likely, as you’re reading this, that you’re off for the holidays, and you’ve enabled the ‘out of office’ setting for your work email. For anyone unaware, this sends an automated message to anyone who sends something to your work email.

However, there can be times when you return, and while looking through the masses of unread emails, you mistakenly miss an important one. This is where a ‘supercharged’ Copilot comes in.

Imagine the AI taking charge of this while you’re away. If an important email is sent, Copilot could send a personalized email to them, acknowledging that you’re off, but the meeting time that they’ve requested, will be fine, and the AI will also add this to your calendar.

Copilot could go even further. If it notices that there are more than 100 unread emails and you’re not due to come back for another week, it could move a bunch of irrelevant emails, into the Trash folder. By the time you return, you’ve got new meetings to attend, and only the most important emails to follow up on.

This is just one example. Yet it’s something that could free up your workflow, especially if you put time aside each week just to sort emails. As mentioned before, Copilot is still in its early throes, but having it integrated into Windows Mail, or other mail clients as a plugin, could prove its worth as a useful assistant.

Offline

Copilot for Microsoft 365

(Image credit: Microsoft)

In early 2023, there were efforts by a group of developers to try and package up OpenAI’s ChatGPT into an app for iPhone. The download size was 4GB, and even then, it proved to be slow to use, as the app was struggling to generate the result, while also using cellular data to make sure that it had the latest information.

So admittedly we are a ways off from using these AI platforms without an internet connection —but you can be sure that companies like Apple and Microsoft want to make this a reality. So let’s see the ability to use Copilot in Windows 12 without an internet connection. It doesn’t have to be the fully-featured version, but it could at least be available to help around the operating system for you. It could batch-rename a bunch of files as mentioned before, it could sort your playlists in Windows Media Player, and it could generate certain images based on the media that are locally stored on your PC.

A great way of giving confidence to assistants like these is to make sure that it’s not reliant on a connection to the web. Having it available when offline, but also letting you know that it’s unable to do certain tasks at the same time, can give users confidence in its reliability.

Windows Media Player DJ

Album artwork in Media Player in Windows 11

(Image credit: TechRadar)

If, like some of us, you have countless music tracks that span across decades and genres, and you’ve spent many hours sorting these into playlists that you can summon for moments when running, exercising, and more.

With the heralded return of Windows Media Player in Windows 11, it should go a step further, and have Copilot act as your own personal DJ in Windows 12. A great way to get an idea of this is Spotify — while they currently offer an AI DJ in beta, there is also an ongoing test of this AI, where it’s helping users discover new music in new playlists it curates for them.

It’s a fun way of helping users discover new music — but not for the music you already have. Instead, let Copilot be responsible for both of these aspects. Send it a request to sort tracks that made the number one spot in the charts, into a new playlist for example. Or have it discover from your calendar that you’re planning a long trip in the car, so it will create a playlist that will last however long the approximate journey lasts.

As an aside, it would be great to have podcasts be a part of Windows Media Player for Windows 12 — so this could also work great for Copilot. Have it create a playlist that is a mix of music and podcasts, so you almost have a radio station that’s curated for you.

Ultimately though, Copilot and Windows Media Player feel like a match made in music heaven — having this available as soon as Windows 12 is made available, could entice plenty to upgrade, especially if Copilot helps users sort out the thousands of tracks that they’ve had for years.

Daryl Baxter
Software & Downloads Writer

Daryl had been freelancing for 3 years before joining TechRadar, now reporting on everything software-related. In his spare time he's written a book, 'The Making of Tomb Raider', alongside podcasting and usually found playing games old and new on his PC and MacBook Pro. If you have a story about an updated app, one that's about to launch, or just anything Software-related, drop him a line.