Microsoft is Bringing an AI-Powered Editor to Word

Something BIG to know: Microsoft has unveiled a new feature for Word’s online version that uses AI to improve a writer's grammar and style. Called 'Ideas,' the editor uses natural language processing and machine learning to make a document more concise and readable.


CEO Satya Nadella revealed Ideas during a keynote on the first day of Microsoft’s Build developer conference. The tool not only recommends rewriting certain phrases to improve their clarity but also offers synonyms and alternative phrasing, all of which should cut down your proofreading times. It justifies and explains each suggestion, allowing the user to learn and, hopefully, improve as a writer.

Ideas also brings benefits to those reading documents. The feature provides estimated reading times and decodes acronyms using the Microsoft Graph, but one of the best elements might be the way it extracts key points from a document, so you don’t have to wade through every line.

Another part of Ideas is the Word Designer, which aids users in styling various parts of a document, including tables.


All this will be familiar to those who use Grammarly—the premium, subscription-based version offers similar features as Ideas and is available as a Word add-on. Google, meanwhile, has its own AI-powered grammar-checking feature in Docs.


Office 365 customers will be able to check out a preview of Ideas in Word this June. It will be generally available to all users in the fall.

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