Microsoft has integrated advertisements for its Copilot Pro service into the Windows 11 Settings homepage, according to reports from the Windows Insider community. The promotional card for Copilot Pro aims to provide users with information about the service, offering priority access to GPT-4, accelerated AI performance, and faster AI image creation. Spotted by enthusiast @phantomofearth, the card is not visible to all; some Insiders can enable it using ViveTool, while others find it by default after updating.
User Response and Ad Placement
The addition of Copilot Pro advertisements within the Settings interface has prompted concerns among users, marking a continuation of Microsoft's trend of incorporating promotional content in the operating system. The cards, originally designed to allow personalized access to frequently used settings based on user activity, are now showcasing an advertisement, a strategy that might not resonate well with the Windows 11 community. Criticism arises from users who view such integrated ads as detracting from the operating system's user experience.
Looks like a Copilot Pro subscription card is being added to the Settings Home page, as well as a section for Copilot Pro in Accounts settings which displays billing information. Hidden in the latest Dev and Beta builds. pic.twitter.com/XRS3gRlSfJ
— PhantomOcean3 ☃️ (@PhantomOfEarth) February 2, 2024
Implications for Windows 11 Usage
The promotional strategy's impact on user preference and its potential to drive users towards earlier Windows versions remains uncertain. Though Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella has highlighted the growth in Copilot users across Windows platforms signaling successful adoption, the appropriateness of the Copilot Pro subscription, especially at $20/month, is debated. The Pro version's suitability for everyday users and its high power consumption are key considerations. The response to this initiative may influence future advertising strategies on Windows 11.
Ads in Outlook Confusing Users
Microsoft has been angering users with its ads policy in its own services. Last week, I reported on ads appearing in the Outlook app. These ads, which closely mimic the appearance of regular emails, are causing frustration as they are seemingly designed to encourage accidental clicks. Users of the free version of Outlook, which replaced the retired Mail app on Windows, are the ones affected by this update.