April 13, 2024

Microsoft Copilot on a web browser with a mobile phone with the Copilot symbol in the foreground

Microsoft Copilot
Illustration: JLStock (Shutterstock)

Microsoft customers are reportedly comparing its AI Copilot tools to OpenAI’s ChatGPT — and complaining that Copilot falls short. But Microsoft employees say customers with the complaints just don’t understanding how to use the tool.

“Every time a customer starts using it, they start comparing it to ChatGPT and saying, ‘Aren’t you guys using the same technology?’” an unnamed Microsoft employee with knowledge of customer feedback told Business Insider.

In November, Microsoft made Microsoft 365 Copilot — the company’s AI assistant for Office apps including World and Excel — available for companies to buy. Most workers testing the tool before it was widely released were using the AI assistant to summarize meetings and to highlight and summarize emails, said Colette Stallbaumer, general manager of the future of work at Microsoft.

Employees told Business Insider that Microsoft 365 Copilot, which has reached the most customers of the Copilot tools, has received mixed feedback that has mostly been positive. However, some customers using older versions of Microsoft’s suite of business tools were expecting the more advanced Copilot to work with it and as such are struggling with implementing the tool, leading to unfavorable comparisons with ChatGPT.

Microsoft employees also told Business Insider some users are also unskilled at writing prompts: “If you don’t ask the right question, it will still do its best to give you the right answer and it can assume things,” one employee said. To help, Microsoft hired its partner, BrainStorm, to make videos to train customers on writing prompts to use Copilot more effectively, an employee told Business Insider. Microsoft did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

In mid-March, Microsoft announced its Microsoft Copilot for Security tool, the AI industry’s “first generative AI solution” for security and IT professionals that is trained on “large-scale data and threat intelligence,” including over 78 trillion security signals that the company processes daily. Security analysts reported being 22% faster with Copilot for Security, and 7% reported their work being more accurate with the tool, according to an economic study by the company.

After the announcement, Microsoft stock reached a record high $427.81 in intraday trading.

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