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Microsoft just created a massive dedicated AI division

Just a day after a new Partnership on Artificial Intelligence was announced, Microsoft has gone and created a whole new AI division.

The company, which is part of the newly announced Partnership on Artificial Intelligence to Benefit People and Society, has brought together several departments to create its own internal AI and Research Group.

The move will see Cortana, Bing, and the company’s Research and Information Platform groups come together.

Related: Cortana vs Siri vs Google Now

Windows 10
Windows is set to benefit from the changes

Harry Shum, Executive Vice Presient of Microsoft Research, will oversee the group, which also includes Microsoft’s Ambient Computing and Robotics teams.

More than 5,000 computer scientists and engineers will be part of the newly created AI division, Schum explained in a blog post.

Schum himself has been at the company for 20 years working on Research and Bing engineering.

Microsoft explained in a written announcement that the move is aimed at “democratizing AI for every person and organization, making it more accessible and valuable to everyone and ultimately enabling new ways to solve some of society’s toughest challenges.”

What exactly will the internal AI division be working on? Well, Microsoft specifically highlights AI product engineering, basic and applied research labs, and New Experiences and Technologies as the main focus points.

The company also lays out a ‘four-pronged’ approach to ‘democratising AI’. This consists of improving digital assistants, adding AI to applications such as Skype and Office 365, making AI functionality available to other developers, and building “the world’s most powerful AI supercomputer”.

It seems the change will have a real impact on Windows users over the coming years then, with several software packages set to benefit from intelligent capabilities.

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Let us know your thoughts of Microsoft’s AI ambitions in the comments.

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