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  • Khushboo Pareek

Microsoft launches PC with 'photographic memory,' Musk terms it episode from Black Mirror

Microsoft has unveiled a personal computer with a feature which will allow users to track their computer activities, including web browsing and voice chats, creating a searchable history stored on the computer.

Tesla boss Elon Musk, however, was not impressed with the feature, which he vowed he would turn down.

"This is a Black Mirror episode. Definitely turning this 'feature' off," he wrote in a post on X, responding to a video of Microsoft Satya Nadella explaining the feature.

Explaining the feature, Nadella said, "How do we introduce memory, right, photographic memory into what you do on your PC. And now we have it. So it's called 'Recall'. It's not keyword search, it's semantic search over all your history. And it's not just any document, we can recreate moments from past essentially."

Launched on Monday by Nadella, the "Copilot+" PCs willl also have a voice assistant acting as a real-time virtual coach in the "Minecraft" video game.

At the launch event in Redmond, Washington, Nadella said that Microsoft and various manufacturers, including Acer and Asustek, would sell them. These PCs can handle more AI tasks locally, starting at $1,000 (Rs 73,000) and will hit the market on June 18.

Microsoft head of consumer marketing Yusuf Mehdi predicted that 50 million AI PCs will be bought in the next year. He said that faster AI assistants running directly on PCs will be a major reason for users to upgrade their computers.

"This first wave of Copilot+ PCs is just the beginning. Over the past year, we have seen an incredible pace of innovation of AI in the cloud with Copilot allowing us to do things that we never dreamed possible. Now, we begin a new chapter with AI innovation on the device," Microsoft said in a blog.

Microsoft's new "Copilot+" computer category with AI features draws parallels to Intel's "Ultrabook" campaign in 2011 aimed at thin Windows laptops to rival Apple's MacBook Air.

Microsoft executives announced that GPT-4o, the latest from OpenAI, will soon be integrated into Copilot.

The company also unveiled a new generation of its Surface Pro tablet and Surface Laptop, featuring Qualcomm chips based on Arm architecture.

Microsoft hosted the product event just before its yearly developer conference. It seeks to maintain its lead in creating AI tools that people want to buy. Partnering with OpenAI has given it an edge over Alphabet in the competition to lead in this field.

Windows PC manufacturers face mounting competition from Apple since it switched to custom Arm-based chips, surpassing Intel's processors.

Apple's chips offer Macs better battery life and faster performance.

In 2016, Microsoft partnered with Qualcomm to transition Windows to Arm chips. Qualcomm's exclusive deal with Microsoft ends this year. Nvidia and other chip makers are also developing their own Arm-based PC chips.

Research firm Gartner reported a 15 per cent decrease in global PC shipments last year, with 242 million units sold. Microsoft anticipates the new category of computers to make up about one-fifth of all PC sales.  

Image Source: Unsplash


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