Microsoft’s New Copilot Key Is Just An Elaborate Macro


Microsoft’s New Copilot Key Is Just An Elaborate Macro

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Key Takeaways

  • Microsoft’s Copilot key is simply a macro, not special hardware, and can be set up by users.
  • You can create your own Copilot key by assigning a macro to “Left Shift + Windows key + F23.”
  • It’s intriguing how Microsoft chose to use existing architecture for the Copilot key instead of making new technology.

If you’ve been keeping up with the news around AI PCs, you’ll know that Microsoft is asking all computer manufacturers to include a Copilot key on their keyboards. That way, everyone who uses a Windows PC will have Microsoft’s AI assistant a keystroke away, somewhat like the Windows key that opens the Start menu. However, some digital digging has discovered that the Copilot key doesn’t use any special hardware, and is instead an elaborate macro that you can set up yourself.


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Microsoft’s big Copilot key is just a macro

As spotted by Tom’s Hardware, the new Copilot key that Microsoft wants on all new keyboards doesn’t do anything particularly special. In fact, the way it works is that it triggers a specific key combination that tells Windows to open Copilot. As such, you can technically create your own Copilot key by downloading a macro app and assigning the same key combination to whatever key you want.

If you’d like to make your own, assign the macro to press “Left Shift + Windows key + F23” at the same time. As it turns out, computers can support up to 24 Function keys, and there are some niche keyboards out there that use all of them instead of the regular F1-12 we get on regular keyboards. The fact that Microsoft not only bound the macro to a key not many people had, but also added the Left Shift and Windows Key requirement to it, means that Microsoft really doesn’t want the Copilot key to interfere with anyone’s macro workflow.

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From a user level, there shouldn’t be any difference between using a macro to open Copilot and designing a new key specifically for Copilot. However, it’s interesting to see how Microsoft is designing its revolutionary new key, and how it decided to use the existing architecture instead of inventing new ones.

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