Take the strain off of your fingers and let Word do the typing for you.
Microsoft is pretty confident in its AI services recently—so confident, in fact, that the company believes it can predict what you’re going to type next. Microsoft is adding a predictive text feature into Word that will try to guess what you’re trying to say.
Microsoft Word’s New Predictive Text Feature
News of this feature broke on the Office Insider website. Predictive text is coming to both Word and Outlook and will attempt to guess your next word as you type.
This new feature never hops in and takes control over your typing; instead, it will add a suggestion to the end of the word you’re currently writing. If it’s right on the money, you can press the Tab key to fill it out automatically. If it got it completely wrong, hitting the Escape key will wipe it away.
If you want to give this feature a try for yourself, it’s not fully out in the wild just yet. However, Microsoft has confirmed the following can give it a shot:
The feature is available for 50% of Windows Beta Channel users running Version 2010 Build 13301.20004 or later. This feature is starting to rollout to all Microsoft 365 SKUs on Word on the web except for Microsoft 365 Business Basic, Microsoft 365 F3, Microsoft 365 A1.
However, if you’re in North America and you use Outlook on the Web, you can start using the feature starting from now.
It’ll be interesting to see how people warm to the idea of predictive text in Outlook and Word. Microsoft confirms that the AI will better predict what you want to say the more you use it, which definitely hints at a machine-learning AI reading everything you write.
We saw a similar feature arrive a few years ago when Google introduced predictive text to Gmail. This feature learned your typing habits from your past emails; however, it was a bit iffy on the privacy front, and we recommended turning off the AI-driven feature.
Taking the Words Right Out of Your Mouth
If you want to save some time while typing up a huge document, you may find Word’s new predictive text a blessing. It’s not out for everyone just yet, but it’s only a matter of time until it is.
It will be interesting to see if Microsoft’s predictive text will be included in its future productivity products by default. With the new Office 2021 not that far away, we should hopefully see the predictive text feature from day one.
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