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MB-220 Microsoft Dynamics 365 for Marketing Topics |

MB-220 Topics - Microsoft Dynamics 365 for Marketing Updated: 2024

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Exam Code: MB-220 Microsoft Dynamics 365 for Marketing Topics January 2024 by team

MB-220 Microsoft Dynamics 365 for Marketing

Candidates for this exam are Microsoft Dynamics 365 Customer Engagement functional consultants with marketing expertise. Candidates are responsible for implementing solutions that attract and convert leads, build brand awareness, standardize omnichannel messaging, and deliver marketing insights.

Candidates are responsible for configuring and expanding the core marketing application to include email marketing, setup, interactive customer journeys, leads nurturing with personalized experiences, LinkedIn integration, Events, Voice of the Customer, Landing Pages, segmentation and scoring, and maintaining General Data Protection Regulation(GDPR) compliance.

Candidates should have some knowledge of marketing principles and the Marketing application's role in relationship to the Microsoft Dynamics 365 suite of applications, including integration with Microsoft Dynamics 365 and Office 365 applications. Candidates should understand industry terminology, priorities, common initiatives, standards, methodologies, and best practices.

- Configure marketing applications (5-10%)

- Manage segments and lists (10-15%)

- Create and manage marketing forms and pages (10-15%)

- Manage leads (10-15%)

- Create and manage marketing emails (10-15%)

- Manage customer journeys (15-20%)

- Manage events and webinars (10-15%)

- Configure and analyze customer responses (10-15%)

Course Outline | Syllabus | Exam Objectives

Configure marketing applications (5-10%)

Configure marketing settings

 verify organization and business management settings

 define default matching strategies

 configure quota limits

 configure event settings

 configure Customer Insights synchronization

 manage keywords for images for an organization

 create templates

 configure the privacy banner

 configure settings for landing pages

 configure data protection tools

 configure Campaign & Materials Approval Workflow

 configure Marketing Business Units

Manage segments and lists (10-15%)

Create and manage segments

 determine segment type

 create market segments

 configure dynamic segments using Designer, Flow, or Query

 combine segments using union, exclude, or intersect logic

Create and manage subscription centers and lists

 determine usage scenarios for subscription lists

 create a subscription list

 add a subscription list or lists to a form

 create a segment based on a subscription list

 create and manage Subscription Center

Create and manage marketing forms and pages (10-15%)

Create marketing forms

 determine which marketing form type to use

 determine form requirements and limitations

 create a marketing form using a template

 enable prefilling for forms

 embed a form on an external website

 create new fields to add to marketing forms

Create and manage marketing pages

 determine which marketing page type to use

 create a marketing page using a template

 add form blocks to marketing pages

 customize a marketing page

 create and use dynamic test links

 implement dedicated marketing page blocks

 preview and validate marketing pages

 publish a marketing page

 configure Personalized Landing Pages

Manage leads (10-15%)

Create and manage leads

 create leads manually or automatically

 synchronize leads from LinkedIn by using the LinkedIn connector

 create and manage leads and lead segments through parent contacts/accounts

 create and manage leads through social content

Create and assess sales readiness

 create and manage Lead Scoring Models

 create explicit and implicit scoring conditions

 create compound conditions

 set up condition models

 configure thresholds

Create and manage marketing emails (10-15%)

Create email messages

 create an email message

 define mandatory fields

 add dynamic content to email messages

 integrate marketing pages with marketing emails

 create A/B Emails

Publish and manage email messages

 preview and test messages

 validate and publish messages

 edit Go live emails

Manage customer journeys (15-20%)

Create customer journeys

 determine template types

 implement content types

 set up a customer journey

 implement activity and launch workflow options

 implement targets

 implement flow control for customer journeys

Publish and manage customer journeys

 validate and publish a customer journey

 edit live customer journeys

Manage events and webinars (10-15%)

Create and manage events

 create an event team

 set up agendas, including internal and external tracks

 manage speakers, registration, waitlists, and attendees

 manage vendors, logistics, and accommodations

Create and manage webinars

 determine webinar types

 configure webinar options

Configure and analyze customer responses (10-15%)

Create and manage surveys and survey responses

 identify survey question types

 determine respondent types

 configure response routing

 preview and test surveys

 publish surveys for customer journeys

 implement workflow conditional logic for survey actions

Manage Customer Insights

 determine report types

 analyze contact insights

 analyze lead insights

 analyze segment insights

 analyze customer journey insights

 analyze email insights

 analyze lead scoring model insights

 analyze marketing page insights

 analyze marketing form insights

 analyze website insights

 analyze redirect URL insights

 gather and summarize survey results
Microsoft Dynamics 365 for Marketing
Microsoft Microsoft Topics

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Microsoft Dynamics 365 for Marketing
Question: 104
You are a marketing professional. You have created a marketing form and want content items to automatically fill in
for the customer.
What is a valid form for prefill?
A. Pre-fill Form
B. Survey Form
C. Journey Form
D. Subscription Center Form
Answer: D
Question: 105
Note: This question is part of a series of questions that present the same scenario.
Which question in the series contains a unique solution that might meet the stated goals. Some question sets might
have more than one correct solution, while others might not have a correct solution.
After you answer a question in this section, you will NOT be able to return to it. As a result, these questions will not
appear in the review screen.
You have created a lead scoring model for a marketing effort. The lead scoring model has 3 grades: Cold, Warm and
Hot. After a week you notice that no one has received any scores from your model. Solution: You add an action tile.
Does this resolve your issue?
A. Yes
B. No
Answer: B
Question: 106
You are a marketing administrator.
You need a marketing form that will only accept contact information and allow opt-in to emails.
What kind of form should you create?
A. Journey Form
B. Forward to a friend Form
C. Landing Page Form
D. Subscription Page Form
Answer: C
Question: 107
You are a marketing administrator. Your company has a form that prospective clients use for holiday offers. You need
to take down the marketing page that contains the form now that the season is over.
Which three steps are needed, in order, to complete your task? (Choose three.) To answer, move the
appropriate actions from the list of actions to the answer area and arrange them in the correct order.
Question: 108
Your company is expanding its service offering to people who live in Europe.
You must configure your marketing system for compliance with European privacy requirements.
Which three activities should you perform in sequence? To answer, move the appropriate actions from the list of
actions to the answer area and arrange them in the correct order.
Question: 109
Your marketing department has determined that they want to create a Customer Journey that will target marketing
contacts that have visited your website in the past 12 months.
Which type of marketing segment should you create?
A. Profile Segment
B. Interaction Segment
C. Landing Page Segment
D. Customer Insight Segment
Answer: B
Question: 110
You are a marketing professional who needs to create a new field for a marketing page.
You want some text to be in the field when the customer opens the page so that they have an idea of what to enter.
Which field should hold this ghost text?
A. Label
B. Prefill
C. Default Value
D. Placeholder
Answer: D
Question: 111
Your marketing department has given you a list of requirements.
Which requirements will you be able to meet by utilizing the tools in Dynamics 365 for Marketing? To
answer, drag the appropriate requirement to the correct column. Each requirement may be used once, more than once
or not at all. You may need to drag the split bar between panes or scroll to view the content. NOTE: Each correct
selection is worth one point.
Question: 112
Your landing page must include your privacy banner to let your customers know that you take their privacy seriously.
Once enabled, where will the full text of your privacy policy be stored?
A. on your organizations private website, with the login information needed to access it
B. on any publicly-available website, with the URL listed in the Event Management Settings
C. on your organizations website, with the URL listed on the Default Configuration Set
D. on any publicly-available website, with the URL listed in the Landing Page Configuration Set
Answer: D
Question: 113
Note: This question is part of a series of questions that present the same scenario. Which question in the series
contains a unique solution that might meet the stated goals. Some question sets might have more than one correct
solution, while others might not have a correct solution.
After you answer a question in this section, you will NOT be able to return to it. As a result, these questions will not
appear in the review screen.
The corporate marketing team has developed a branding strategy that includes five mandatory components and visual
requirements that must be incorporated for all materials.
The VP of Marketing, who receives a copy of each email sent, has recently seen some emails that do not adhere to all
five standards.
You need to ensure that future emails adhere to these standards.
Solution: You examine all existing templates. Upon identifying those that do not meet standards, you make appropriate
adjustments to the non-conforming templates.
Does this meet the goal?
A. Yes
B. No
Answer: B
Question: 114
You are a marketing professional who needs to have a segment that is based on a single marketing list.
Which five actions must you perform in sequence? To answer, move the appropriate actions from the list of actions to
the answer area and arrange them in the correct order.
Question: 115
You are a marketing professional.
You need to create a marketing form that will include a subscription list you have already created. The marketing form
will be finalized by a colleague.
Which three actions should you perform in sequence? To answer, move the appropriate actions from the list of actions
to the answer area and arrange then in the correct order.
Question: 116
Note: This question is part of a series of questions that present the same scenario.
Which question in the series contains a unique solution that might meet the stated goals. Some question sets might
have more than one correct solution, while others might not have a correct solution.
After you answer a question in this section, you will NOT be able to return to it. As a result, these questions will not
appear in the review screen.
The corporate marketing team has developed a branding strategy that includes five mandatory components and visual
requirements that must be incorporated for all materials. The VP of Marketing, who receives a copy of each email sent,
has recently seen some emails that do not adhere to all five standards.
You need to ensure that future emails adhere to these standards.
Solution: You create an approval process on the template records. You restrict usable templates to only those that have
been approved.
Does this meet the goal?
A. Yes
B. No
Answer: A
Question: 117
Note: This question is part of a series of questions that present the same scenario. Which question in the series
contains a unique solution that might meet the stated goals. Some question sets might have more than one correct
solution, while others might not have a correct solution.
After you answer a question in this section, you will NOT be able to return to it. As a result, these questions will not
appear in the review screen.
The corporate marketing team has developed a branding strategy that includes five mandatory components and visual
requirements that must be incorporated for all materials.
The VP of Marketing, who receives a copy of each email sent, has recently seen some emails that do not adhere to all
five standards.
You need to ensure that future emails adhere to these standards.
Solution: You send an email to any user who created a deficient template identifying the deficiencies and request that
they correct their templates.
Does this meet the goal?
A. Yes
B. No
Answer: B
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Microsoft Microsoft Topics - BingNews Search results Microsoft Microsoft Topics - BingNews Not Dead Yet: Microsoft-Branded PC Accessories Relaunch With Incase

We have good news for fans of Microsoft-branded PC accessories: The products will continue to live on, even though the company decided to discontinue them back in April.

On Friday, the laptop peripheral maker Incase announced it would pick up the torch and relaunch the Microsoft-branded accessories. To do so, Incase’s parent company Onward Brands will license the rights and intellectual property from Microsoft’s product portfolio. 

The resulting agreement means Incase can produce the PC accessories using the same design and components as before, “ensuring that the products stay true to the favorites that consumers enjoy and trust,” the companies said. 

“Under the terms of the agreement, Incase will manufacture and distribute a broad suite of Microsoft accessory products including keyboards, mice, webcams, headsets and speakers,” the peripheral maker added. This includes favorites such as Microsoft’s Sculpt Ergonomic Keyboard and the Modern Webcam. 

Modern webcam

(Credit: Incase)

In addition, Incase plans on releasing a new ergonomic keyboard that Microsoft was developing before it decided to discontinue the product line. However, the upcoming accessories won’t carry the same Microsoft trademarks as before. Instead, they’ll carry Incase's leaf logo and be marketed under the "Designed by Microsoft” name.

“Consumers can anticipate their favorite products back on shelves in 2024 under the Incase brand as we immediately begin to transition the portfolio,” said Marshall Clark, a general manager at Incase’s parent company Onward Brands.

Recommended by Our Editors

No pricing was revealed. In the meantime, you can persue a web page cataloging 23 products. 

As for Microsoft, the company decided to discontinue the accessories last year to focus on developing Surface-branded PC peripherals, including mice, keyboards, docks and more. Despite the discontinuation, you can still find some legacy Microsoft-branded PC accessories on sale online, but only while supplies last.

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Fri, 05 Jan 2024 02:41:00 -0600 en text/html
Microsoft Announces First New Key for Windows Keyboards In 30 Years No result found, try new keyword!Ahead of CES 2024, Microsoft announced that it is adding a new key to its Windows keyboard layout for the first time in 30 years. Thu, 04 Jan 2024 05:05:00 -0600 Microsoft Creates Dedicated Keyboard Key for Copilot AI

Microsoft is preparing to tweak today’s Windows PC keyboards to make room for generative AI: Meet the Copilot Key. 

The key is designed to automatically trigger the Copilot program on Windows 11, giving users quick access to Microsoft’s ChatGPT-powered virtual assistant. “This will not only simplify people’s computing experience but also amplify it, making 2024 the year of the AI PC,” the company says.

Microsoft touts the Copilot key as the biggest change to the PC keyboard layout since the company introduced the Windows logo key in 1994, which pulls up the Start Menu. 

The new copilot button


Copilot landed on Windows 11 in September. It's accessible through an icon on the taskbar, but Microsoft is so bullish on generative AI, it decided Copilot deserved a spot as a hardware-based key. As a result, the company recruited the PC industry to begin implementing the dedicated Copilot key across their products.

“In this new year, we will be ushering in a significant shift toward a more personal and intelligent computing future where AI will be seamlessly woven into Windows from the system, to the silicon, to the hardware,” the company added. 

Recommended by Our Editors

Copilot program

(Credit: Microsoft)

The first products to carry the Copilot key are poised to debut at CES next week in Las Vegas, including the new Dell XPS 14 and XPS 16. Microsoft and its PC partners then plan to start selling them “beginning later this month through spring, including on upcoming Surface devices.”

If you’re still on Windows 10, you can also expect to receive Copilot soon. In addition, Microsoft recently released Copilot for both Android and iOS as standalone apps.

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Wed, 03 Jan 2024 18:01:00 -0600 en text/html
Windows 11 Field Guide Update: More Progress on 23H2

Windows 11 Field Guide Update

In October, I revealed that I would update the Windows 11 Field Guide for Windows 11 version 23H2 for free. At the time, the e-book version of the book was over 900 pages long, and it was pretty obvious that the functional and visual changes that Microsoft was making in 23H2 would require many new screenshots and lots of new writing and rewriting.

But that’s the job. And since then, I’ve made good progress.

Sign up for our new free newsletter to get three time-saving tips each Friday — and get free copies of Paul Thurrott's Windows 11 and Windows 10 Field Guides (normally $9.99) as a special welcome gift!

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I started by mapping out a schedule for the first 23H2 update, figuring out where to add content to existing chapters, where to add new chapters, and what to focus on first, and I focused on the web version of the book first so that I could get feedback before adding the first 23H2 chapters to the e-book. And then Microsoft surprised me by releasing 23H2 earlier than expected, albeit in preview form. And so I published my first 23H2 update for the e-book in late October with 160 pages of new and updated content. At the time, it was over 950 pages long and was comprised of over 150,000 words.

Since that update, I’ve published new and updated chapters to the web and e-book simultaneously. And with another two months behind us, I figured it was time for another quick update on this work.

As of today, the Windows 11 Field Guide is 1058 pages long, an increase of over 100 pages in just two months. The word count has risen commensurately to over 169,000 words, up over 19,000 words in two months. And that’s because I added or completely updated the following chapters during that time:

  • File Explorer
  • App Basics
  • Windows Hello, Presence Sensing, and Dynamic Lock
  • Windows 11 Version 23H2 Personalization First Steps
  • Customize the Display
  • Customize the Lock and Sign-In Screens
  • Customize Your Privacy Settings
  • Desktop
  • Start
  • Taskbar
  • Widgets
  • Search
  • Quick Settings
  • Copilot (new chapter, with two major versions released)
  • Notifications
  • Work and School Accounts
  • Secure Your Microsoft Account (new chapter)
  • Passkeys and Security Keys (new chapter)

Fortunately, Microsoft hasn’t issued any new system features since it released 23H2. But there are still more new and updated 23H2 features to cover in the book, including Dynamic Lighting, the new AI features in Paint, Photos, Store, and the Snipping Tool, the new Outlook and Teams (free) apps, Dev Home and the other new in-box developer features, all of the Microsoft Edge functional and UI changes that have occurred since mid-2023, and more. I’ve started work on some of these topics, but I’ve run into a few roadblocks that include my inability to get Dynamic Lighting to recognize the Razer keyboard and mouse I purchased, despite the fact that they are explicitly compatible with that feature. Plus, I have other long-standing, incomplete topics to finish up too, like PowerShell, the Windows Recovery Environment, Microsoft To Do, and more. And are there are topics I’ve not yet tackled at all, like the Windows Insider Program and Windows 11 on Arm, but will. And probably more still that I’ve temporarily zoned on here.

There’s always more to do. And there will be more coming in Moment 5, probably in February. That’s fine: I’ll keep chipping away.

But in the meantime, be sure to check out the new content in the web version of the book if you’re a Premium member. And if you bought the book, download it again today because I’ve probably added a lot of new content since you last did so. Either way, thanks for reading and for supporting this work. My goal has always been to make the Windows 11 Field Guide as useful as possible, and it’s never been better.



Thu, 04 Jan 2024 04:28:00 -0600 en-US text/html
Microsoft in 2023: year in review

Microsoft’s year has been clearly dominated by one major topic – and that’s AI. Although that’s true of a fair few tech companies, of course, seeing as in 2023, artificial intelligence became a massive juggernaut pretty much everyone jumped aboard.

We witnessed the creation of Bing AI, and then its incorporation in Windows 11 as Copilot, a desktop-based AI assistant, plus much more besides. So, let’s dive in and evaluate the year Microsoft has had, and whether it’s been a productive and successful period for the tech giant.

Bing AI

Bing me the horizon

Any discussion of Microsoft’s 2023 should surely start with the progress the company made on the AI front, where it veritably forged ahead through the year, making it clear that the firm is putting a whole lot of eggs in this particular basket for the future.

This all kicked off right back at the start of the year, when in January, Microsoft invested a whopping $10 billion in OpenAI, the maker of ChatGPT.

It was no surprise when Microsoft subsequently launched its Bing AI in February with that artificial intelligence built around ChatGPT.

There was an avalanche of interest in the new Bing chatbot (which was later renamed to Copilot – but not until the end of the year, and for clarity’s sake, we’ll refer to the web-based chatbot as Bing AI here, to help differentiate from Copilot in Windows). Despite early controversies with the ChatGPT-powered AI bot – involving hallucinations and other oddness – Microsoft quickly established a lead over its rival Google Bard.

Since then, Microsoft has improved its AI and bolted on extra features at a fair old rate of knots. Bing AI was quickly updated to run GPT-4 when OpenAI released that new version of its LLM (large language model), and it made big strides forward in terms of image creation (which is now extremely impressive) for example, and many other areas besides.

While Google’s Bard has been perceived as catching up to Bing AI somewhat, Microsoft has kept development going at a swift pace.

AI obviously became a super-hot ticket in 2023, but if anything illustrates the weight it now carries at Microsoft, it’s a switch in attitude with Windows 10.

Bing AI chat image results

If you recall, with the launch of the Bing chatbot, it felt very much like Microsoft’s hope was that the AI could be used to drive its other services forwards. For example, that Bing AI would mean more traffic for search, propelling the latter forwards in the battle against Google’s search engine (this did not work out, by the way).

Or that putting the AI into Windows 11 – in a more extensive form, as the Copilot assistant, as happened in September – would perhaps help to persuade people to upgrade from Windows 10. Basically, using it as a major carrot, a huge new feature, to tempt folks.

Well, if that ever was the idea, it was turned on its head as 2023 rolled to a close, and in November, Microsoft announced it was bringing Copilot to Windows 10. Remember, this happened after Microsoft saying earlier in the year that Windows 10 was effectively on life support, feature-wise, and would only get minor tweaks if anything at all. And Copilot, well – you couldn’t get a more major change.

What this illustrates for us – and it is just our theory, mind – is how absolutely crucial AI is to Microsoft now. Initially, it may have been partly seen as a vehicle to get people to use search, or migrate to Windows 11, and so forth – but now, it’s the other way around. More Windows users are needed to bolster AI usage numbers, in other words, hence bringing Copilot to the billion-strong ranks of Windows 10’s userbase – after Microsoft said the older OS would get no meaningful additions.

As November rolled to a close, Microsoft almost made another big move on the AI front. By which we mean for a very brief period, Microsoft was going to sign up Sam Altman after he was ousted as CEO of OpenAI, but in the end he returned to the company after OpenAI’s board quickly reversed course.

What’s interesting is that Satya Nadella tried to draft Altman on board to head up a ‘new advanced AI research firm’ at Microsoft as soon as Altman (temporarily) parted ways with OpenAI, again showing how laser-focused and serious Microsoft is in terms of pushing with AI (if you needed any more evidence).

Copilot in Windows

Windows 11: Cleared for AI take-off

So what went down with Microsoft’s desktop OS this year? As we’ve just mentioned, the biggest introduction for Windows 11 was the Copilot AI – although to a large extent, this feature is more about what’s coming down the line, than what we’ve actually got in the operating system right now.

Microsoft has promised that Copilot will eventually become a powerful AI assistant with the ability to change multiple Windows settings in one fell swoop, allowing for users to request something simple (‘I want to focus and be more productive’) and bringing in options and features to help with that. It’ll have plug-ins to expand its functionality considerably, and achieve tasks such as implementing a load of tweaks to make the PC run faster, for example.

However, right now, Copilot remains a glorified version of the Bing chatbot that sits in a side-panel on the desktop, with little in the way of these far-reaching Windows-altering powers. It holds a ton of promise, for sure, but so far, the reality is a little underwhelming.

Windows 11 File Explorer on a PC in an office

Windows 11: Streamlining and unwelcome suggestions

Aside from the AI assistant, another angle Microsoft worked with Windows 11 was streamlining the OS throughout the year. We witnessed a number of welcome initiatives to cut back on the bloat, including getting rid of some redundant bits of the interface and system apps, as well as allowing the user to uninstall some of the default apps in Windows 11.

This was a bit of a theme on a more general level, too, when you consider that with its Edge browser, Microsoft started pruning features rather than chucking more in the pot – realizing the danger of bloating the client. Furthermore, we saw an intent to streamline Windows 11 for use in gaming handhelds (like the Asus ROG Ally) with a new ‘compact mode’ for the interface of the Xbox app, which is perhaps the first step on the road to the rumored ‘handheld mode’ that may eventually be realized.

It’s also worth noting that some much-wanted features arrived in Windows 11 this year – for example, the option to ‘never combine’ apps on the taskbar.

Sadly, what was unwelcome with Windows 11 this year was an increased focused on jamming thinly-veiled ads into the interface here and there. Microsoft calls this ‘badging’ and couches some of this as offering recommendations, but the line between trying to help the user with suggestions, and pushing its own services with what are effectively ads, is a very thin and blurry one. We also saw further efforts to constantly push Edge on Windows users, too (a familiar story).

What really put some noses out of joint, though, is the revelation towards the end of 2023 that Microsoft will give European users the ability to actually ditch Edge from Windows 11, and banish Bing from the taskbar search box, among other useful customization options – but these have come in purely because of regulations in the European Economic Area. Windows 11 users in the US or other regions won’t get the benefit, which seems very unfair.

Windows 11 bugs continued to frustrate throughout the year, too, and there were some particularly stubborn flaws that took a lot of time to cure, sapping the patience of those affected. We’re thinking primarily about the SSD slowdown debacle.

Windows 11 adoption still struggled throughout 2023 and some of these issues will need to be tackled, we feel, if that situation is to change. Then again, with Windows 10 having under two years of support left now, maybe Microsoft has got to the point where it’ll just wait things out. (As noted, having Copilot as a central lure for persuading Windows 10 users to upgrade has gone out of the, er, window, after all).

Surface Laptop Go 3

Paper-thin Surface refreshes

As ever, Microsoft had its annual batch of Surface devices, but for this year, the launches were much more lowkey. We saw the revelation of the Surface Laptop Go 3 and Surface Laptop Studio 2 in September (as well as the Surface Go 4 – but that’s a device Microsoft is targeting at businesses specifically).

The Surface Laptop Go 3 is a nice piece of hardware, but is let down by the unjustified price hikes applied considering the upgrades bestowed on the notebook. As for the Surface Laptop Studio 2, that has a lot going for it in terms of a heavyweight laptop, but again, it’s seriously pricey.

Overall, Microsoft had a quiet and rather underwhelming year on the hardware front, and there was no sign of what people wanted to see – the Surface Pro 10.

Diablo 4

Finally finalizing that Activision Blizzard buyout

This was the year that, after a whole lot of preamble – and fretting on Satya Nadella’s part, no doubt – Microsoft sealed the deal and finally acquired Activision Blizzard in October, with a whole heap of regulatory hurdles cleared.

At one point, it looked like the buyout wasn’t going to happen after all, but with some compromises from Microsoft on the cloud gaming front, the acquisition was finally greenlit. A mere 20 months after the buyout was first announced, so it only took very nearly two years to go through.

Whether this will be a good thing for the broader gaming industry, or not, is what we’ll be finding out next year.

Bing AI Chat

Concluding thoughts

There have been some difficult patches for Microsoft in 2023, not the least of which was starting the year by shedding some 10,000 jobs (about 5% of the workforce). Not a great foot to get off on.

It was also a quiet year for hardware, and there was an unusually thin line-up of new Surface machines, with all the noise – a deafening volume of it – being around AI.

Still, despite the undeniable resources and huge push behind artificial intelligence, there’s still a lot of work to be done here.

Copilot in Windows must be fully realized into the vision of the all-singing-and-dancing AI we were presented with when Microsoft first talked enthusiastically about the desktop-based assistant. You know, the AI puppeteer pulling the strings of Windows settings and applying multiple tweaks in unison at the user’s bidding to make the OS so much easier to use.

Right now, Copilot isn’t even a quarter baked compared to that future vision, and if it takes too long in the oven, the danger is perhaps that it’ll be labeled with a reputation that drags it down (who said “Clippy” at the back?) and leaves folks reaching for the off switch.

Is there any real danger of that happening, though? Probably not the way things look, with Microsoft clearly focusing heavily on AI now – and what’s interesting is the way the overall thrust of the company’s drive seems to have shifted more towards software and away from hardware.

With Surface products cast off to the sidelines in 2023, and a massive push with AI and getting it into Windows (11 and 10), Microsoft seems to have the resources allocated to follow through and make Copilot something successful – at least in theory, anyway. 2024 is going to be a very interesting year to watch unfold, that’s for sure, especially if Windows 12 arrives next year as rumored – perhaps that OS will be where Copilot really spreads its wings.

Fri, 29 Dec 2023 21:01:00 -0600 en-US text/html
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You'd be forgiven for losing track of where we're up to with Microsoft's AI chatbot—which, thanks to a partnership with OpenAI, is powered by the same technology you'll find driving ChatGPT and DALL-E. Originally called Bing Chat and acting as an extension of Microsoft's search engine, the bot has since been rebranded as Copilot.

Copilot is quickly finding its way into Windows 11 and various other Microsoft products, and we now have a standalone app to make use of. It's essentially a spin-off of the Bing app on iOS and Android, with the main AI chatbot functions retained and some of the other Bing extras (like news and shopping deals). Microsoft first launched the app on Android, but shipped the iOS version three days later.

If you're curious about testing out Copilot's generative AI capabilities on your iPhone or Android device, here's how to get started with the app and what you need to know about how it works.

First steps with the Copilot app

You can grab Copilot free of charge from the Google Play Store on Android or the iOS App Store, and you can get started right after installing it: You don't even need to sign in with a Microsoft account, though if you don't you'll be limited to five queries per day, and you won't have access to some of the more advanced features (including AI image generation).

There are a few options when it comes to interacting with the bot. You can tap on one of the suggested prompts, type out a question or prompt in the text box at the bottom of the screen, or tap the microphone button (bottom right) and speak directly to Copilot (and get spoken answers in return). If you use the voice option, the mic icon changes to a keyboard icon for when you need to go back to text prompts.

Copilot puts generative AI at your fingertips. Credit: Lifehacker

You'll also see a camera icon at the bottom of the interface—tap this, and you're able to upload a photo from your phone (or take a new one) for Copilot to analyze. You might want to ask something about what's in the picture, for example, or produce a new image based on the one that you've supplied.

There are no settings to speak of inside the app, but you can tap the three dots (top right) to start new topics and configure the "tones" of the chatbot. These tones let you choose a balance between creativity and precision, so make your choice accordingly based on whether you want the responses to be as imaginative as possible or as factually correct as possible (and as always, don't believe everything an AI tells you).

Text generation

One of the primary ways you can use Copilot—as with ChatGPT and Google Bard—is to generate text with it. If you want to get creative with Copilot, you might want to ask it to compose a poem on the topic of your choice, and you can even specify the form, style, tone, and length of the poem if you want to.

There are more business-like applications of the technology, too: Copilot will compose an email to your boss, or a pitch to a client, or a summary of a concept for you. One of the ways in which these generative AI bots can be handy is in explaining difficult topics in simple terms—and you're also able to ask follow-up questions if you need something clarifying further, or there's a particular point you're not sure on.

You can get the app to produce text in all kinds of ways. Credit: Lifehacker

Copilot can also work with text that you paste into it: You can ask for critical comments on your own writing, for instance, or ask to make a block of text more concise or more flamboyant in terms of its language. Note that there's a copy icon at the end of each answer as well, so if you need to copy the text and paste it somewhere else, you can.

One huge perk of Copilot over ChatGPT is free access to GPT-4, a more powerful successor to the GPT-3.5 model. To use it, tap the Use GPT-4 toggle switch at the top of your chats. Just keep in mind the responses might be somewhat slower, and the results you get will generally be more natural and insightful, because they're trained on more data.

Search, images, and more

Copilot goes way beyond text generation. You can, for example, ask it the same kinds of questions you might put into a search engine: Ask it for party game ideas, or for a travel itinerary for a particular city, or for products that it recommends, or for advice on how to achieve a particular task. If Copilot looks up something on the web, you'll see website citations at the end of its response.

You can also try queries you might pose to Alexa, Siri, or Google Assistant—while also bearing in mind that inaccuracies can creep in, even if Copilot is referencing the web. One genuine use for Copilot and other generative AI engines is to remember a word that's on the tip of your tongue—if you describe the word you're almost recalling, and put it in a sentence, Copilot will usually get the one you need.

Copilot can also produce images and search the web. Credit: Lifehacker

Image generation is built into Copilot too, so you can simply ask it to create pictures of anything you like from text prompts: Cats in hot air balloons, an alien cityscape, an exploding cup of coffee, or whatever you need. The image creation capabilities are the same as we've already seen on Bing, and you'll be given four variations to pick from—tap on any of them to see a larger preview.

Microsoft hasn't gone on record about its Copilot app yet, but as far as I can see, you're limited to 30 inputs per conversation if you sign into the app. It's possible that quotas will vary over time, as Microsoft manages demand for its powerful generative AI tools—which for now at least, you can use free of charge.

Thu, 28 Dec 2023 02:37:00 -0600 en text/html
The Future of Security with AI: Microsoft champions game-changing generative AI-security solution to protect more with less

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In H1 2023, online deceptions accounted for over 75% of total deception case in Hong Kong, resulting in a 28% increase in losses to $2.69 billion. At the recent Microsoft Hong Kong Cybersecurity Summit 2023, Microsoft shared valuable cybersecurity insights to help businesses protect more with less. They also introduced Microsoft Security Copilot, now available through the Early Access Program for interested and qualified customers in Hong Kong.

With the rise of AI, cyberattacks have grown rapidly in channels and types. Attackers utilize AI for refine phishing messages and improve influence operations with synthetic imagery. But AI also plays a vital role in defense, automating and augmenting cybersecurity aspects such as threat detection, response, analysis, and prediction.
Amidst sophisticated attack techniques, a shortage of talent and expertise, and complex toolsets for multiple touchpoints, organizations are facing numerous challenges in combating cyber threats in the modern world and securing business environment. 
“AI creates both new threats and opportunities for defense. Going forward, organizations looking to minimize their vulnerabilities must respond by modernizing their organizational skills, mindset, approach and technology.” said Irina Nechaeva, General Manager of Identity & Network Access at Microsoft.

 Generative AI-powered solutions augment human strengths
Microsoft Security Copilot is the first security product to enable defenders to move at the speed and scale of AI. It combines a large language model (LLM) with a security-specific model from Microsoft. This incorporates a growing set of security skills and is informed by Microsoft’s unique global threat intelligence and more than 65 trillion daily signals. Security Copilot also delivers an enterprise-grade security and privacy-compliant experience as it runs on Azure’s hyperscale infrastructure. 
Since launching its Early Access Program in October, Microsoft has received positive customer feedback globally on its ability to enhance prevention, detection, and response to cybersecurity threats, ensuring more protection with less. Some key findings include:
  • Security Copilot demonstrated 44% more accurate response and were 26% faster across all tasks. 
  • 86% reported that Security Copilot helped them improve the quality of their work.  
  • 60% savings by consolidating a patchwork of vendors for a comprehensive solution from Microsoft. 
“Microsoft’s adoption of generative AI in security solutions has brought end-to-end security beyond the traditional protection,” said Abbas Kudrati, Chief Cybersecurity Advisor at Microsoft Asia. “With Security Copilot, security analysts can move faster, requiring a shorter time for response and remediation, and more time to focus on high value tasks. It customizes every query with a natural language interface and language translation, which essentially simplifies the complex process for every organization and unlocks new business opportunities for them.” 
Check out the Security Copilot Early Access program now available to interested and qualified customers in Hong Kong. You may also watch this video to learn more about how Security Copilot empowers defenders to protect more with less. 
Securing the use of generative AI to safeguard your organization
Generative AI solutions must be delivered in a safe, secure and responsible way. Microsoft reinforces their commitment to impactful and responsible AI practices by innovating responsibly, empowering others, and fostering positive impact.
The cornerstone of this work is Microsoft’s commitment to how Security Copilot handles your data:
  • Your data is your data. It’s yours to own and control, and yours to choose how you want to leverage and monetize.
  • Your data is not used to train or enrich foundation AI models used by others. No one beyond your organization is benefiting from AI trained on your data or business processes.
  • Your data and AI models are protected at every step by the most comprehensive enterprise compliance and security controls in the industry.

Meantime, 43% of organizations expressed concerns about AI controls. We must understand, protect and govern the data generated and utilized by generative AI. Microsoft Purview helps comprehensively secure and govern data in AI, for both Microsoft Copilot and non-Microsoft generative AI applications. 

Tue, 05 Dec 2023 02:21:00 -0600 en text/html
The two billionaires have very different opinions on a hotly debated topic. No result found, try new keyword!So, it's no surprise that DEI is a matter of hot contention on X (formerly known as Twitter). But what was surprising was the interaction between Elon Musk and Mark Cuban. Musk tweeted, in the context ... Thu, 04 Jan 2024 21:14:00 -0600 text/html

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