Microsoft Adds Copilot AI Button to New Surface PC Keyboards

Microsoft has announced its latest Surface laptops for business, adding a dedicated Copilot AI button to the keyboards.

The standard PC keyboard is seeing its first major change in decades. Microsoft has unveiled its first Surface for Business PCs with a new key dedicated to quickly opening the Copilot AI panel. The dedicated button will allow folks to enter queries into the chatbot quicker than ever.

Business Laptops That Look Mostly the Same on the Surface

Yes, that pun was totally intentional. It’s also fitting since adding the Copilot AI button is the only outward change you’ll notice on the Surface Pro 10 and Surface Laptop 6 for Business. Microsoft has opted to keep them mostly the same in terms of cosmetic design, but the Windows maker has beefed them up, presumably where it counts.

The Surface Pro 10 looks almost identical to its predecessor, the Surface Pro 9. Microsoft has added one more USB-C Thunderbolt port and an optional SD card reader to the Surface Laptop 6 for Business. The screen bezels and other design choices, though, look just like the Surface Laptop 5.

copilot key on Microsoft Surface

The new Copilot AI key on the Microsoft Surface Laptop 6 for Business (Image courtesy Microsoft)

Oh, other than the new Copilot AI button on the latest Surface PC keyboards. You’ll find the dedicated chatbot button to the left of the arrow keys. It’s built into the Surface Laptop 6 for Business keyboard and the new Surface Pro Keyboard.

Hardware Improvements to Speed Up Copilot AI on the Surface PC

These devices’ improvements are under the hood. Both feature Intel’s latest Core Ultra processors and a Neural Processing Unit (NPU) to help speed up existing and upcoming AI features in Windows 11.

The NPU isn’t new since Microsoft has featured the chip in its Surface PCs since 2019. However, it becomes more important in the context of what Microsoft is calling “AI PCs.” During the unveiling, Microsoft said these first AI-powered PCs were “built for Copilot.”

The newest offerings start shipping on April 9, 2024. Pricing starts at $1,199, and the PCs are available with as much as 64GB of RAM and 1TB of storage. These particular models, however, are only available to commercial customers.

Since PC manufacturers like Lenovo, Dell, and HP have also announced PCs featuring Copilot keys, though, it’s likely just a matter of time before consumer-aimed Surface PCs gain the dedicated button.

AI Seems Here to Stay

Whether you love it, like it, or absolutely hate it, there’s little doubt that AI is here to stay. These dedicated Copilot buttons make that clear, focusing on allowing users to quickly launch the chatbot to start typing their queries. Microsoft has called 2024 the “year of the AI PC,” so expect more on that front in the coming months.

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