Microsoft to roll out AI-powered 365 Copilot

Yahoo Finance’s Daniel Howley joins the Live show to discuss the rollout of Microsoft’s AI-powered ‘365 Copilot.’

Video transcript

RACHELLE AKUFFO: Microsoft announced that it's bringing its generative AI capabilities to its most important software, Office 365. Now the new feature will be called Microsoft 365 Copilot, using similar tech behind its AI-powered Bing software. Yahoo Finance's Dan Howley is here with the latest. Dan, always a move here every day, it seems like, in generative AI.

DAN HOWLEY: That's right, Rachelle. This is basically a kind of tit for tat game that we're seeing being played, just as Microsoft announced its OpenAI-powered Bing in early February. Google announced their Bard AI chat bot just a day before that. And now, just two days before Microsoft unveils its own Microsoft 365 Copilot AI, Google did the exact same thing with its own workspaces apps like Mail, Docs, things like that, having an AI capability. But here, we're talking about Microsoft 365 Copilot. And basically, you can think about it as almost a ChatGPT for Word, PowerPoint, Outlook, Excel, and Teams.

Microsoft is saying that this isn't necessarily ChatGPT in its entirety. It's pieces of ChatGPT, other large language model capabilities as well. And so essentially, what you're looking at is the ability to type in prompts and then have, for instance, Word put together a quick document for you that you can then go in and edit. And Microsoft is very careful to say, look, sometimes it's going to put together the wrong kind of document for you, but that's why we're allowing you to edit it. And even the wrong stuff can be helpful to a degree if you're in a crunch. Well, we'll see if that's how you feel.

On the PowerPoint side-- this would have helped me enormously in high school, middle school, and college-- it can put together a PowerPoint presentation for you based on a few prompts that you can then zhuzh on your own. Excel, it can take some data and then turn it into visuals for you, which is pretty impressive. And then on the Teams side of things, Microsoft is saying that it will be able to follow along with meetings and then pull out the important parts of those meetings for you so that you're then able to get action plans moving forward.

So, really some impressive tech here. I think this is where generative AI is really going to shine. While it's not necessarily going to replace white collar workers or workers in general at this point, it's still very basic stuff that we're looking at here. This isn't going to-- your computer's not going to stand up and start running across your desk any time soon, I hope.

But this is still very impressive technology, and it goes to show you how fast Microsoft wants to iterate on this to stay ahead of the competition. They said this will be available in the coming months. Google, meanwhile, they're testing that, their own product with some trusted testers. So we'll see which one really hits the market first. But, you know, this really is the new platform war, is AI.

RACHELLE AKUFFO: And certainly would save at least some college students some all nighters there with having that Copilot on hand. Also want to take a look at Stripe, which has slashed its valuation. What's happening there?

DAN HOWLEY: Yeah, their valuation is down. They actually brought it down to about 6.5-- $50 billion on its $6.5 billion funding round. They say that this is just cash that they wanted to raise to essentially pay tax bills. So it's not something they needed to actually continue to operate the company. But you saw that drop there from its previous valuation. And so this kind of just shows you how difficult the market is right now for companies like this, where they're trying to raise capital and they're going to run into some roadblocks.

And cutting this valuation by nearly half, I think that's really something that we're going to have to talk about going forward with some of these private companies, as they continue to raise funds. And it can be looked at as a positive and negative. I mean, the fact that they were able to raise as much for themselves at this point and also the fact that they just didn't necessarily-- this wasn't something they needed to continue to operate the company itself. Again, it's part of a tax bill. So I think that's really something that's worth noting here. But it's definitely something we're going to have to be watching going forward or looking at companies trying to raise funding in the future.