Microsoft 365 Copilot is generally available now - but there's an expensive hitch

The new Microsoft 365 Copilot UI in Microsoft Word
(Image credit: Microsoft)

Microsoft’s generative AI Copilot tool for its office software has been made generally available, however you’ll need to pay at least $9,000 per month on top of your existing Microsoft 365 enterprise subscription to even get access.

The company announced the general availability on November 1, claiming to “turn your words into the most powerful productivity tool on the planet.”

From launch, Copilot will support the following languages: English (US, GB, AU, CA, IN) , Spanish (ES, MX) , Japanese, French (FR, CA), German, Portuguese (BR), Italian, and Chinese Simplified.

Microsoft 365 Copilot cost

The company announced the GA of its GenAI tool several months after Google put its rival product into the hands of customers. Both Google Duet AI for Workspace and Microsoft 365 Copilot will cost enterprises $30 per user per month, on top of existing subscriptions.

For Microsoft customers, that means an extra $30 on top of their E3 and E3 licenses, which in the case of Microsoft 365, cost $36 and $57 per user per month based on an annual commitment. 

The catch, though, is that to use Microsoft 365 Copilot, enterprises must commit to buying 300 seats at minimum, which will see them spending at least $9,000 per month just for generative AI, or $19,800 per month in conjunction with a Microsoft 365 E3 license.

Feedback so far has been far from positive, with comments on the official Microsoft blog post complaining that advertising leading up to general availability has been misleading.

One said: “A smaller, enterprise company with less than 300 users could arguably benefit from the Copilot capabilities as much or more than a larger company to automate, simplify many tasks that a smaller company can't always for.”

Another agreed: “This was not forthright and actually pretty bad marketing to say things will be GA when a lot of businesses, the majority even, will not qualify.”

In response to our question regarding availability for fewer seats, a Microsoft spokesperson told us:

"Ahead of enterprise GA, we had a chance to learn from and co-create with our early access enterprise customers. Now, we're doing the same with small businesses and entrepreneurs as part of an early testing program. This testing allows us to gather real-life feedback and fine-tune the product experience for their unique needs. We'll have more to share on broader availability for small businesses in the coming months."

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Craig Hale

With several years’ experience freelancing in tech and automotive circles, Craig’s specific interests lie in technology that is designed to better our lives, including AI and ML, productivity aids, and smart fitness. He is also passionate about cars and the decarbonisation of personal transportation. As an avid bargain-hunter, you can be sure that any deal Craig finds is top value!