Microsoft adding text predictions to Word next month

The feature will work like Google Docs' Smart Compose.

Shelby Brown Editor II
Shelby Brown (she/her/hers) is an editor for CNET's services team. She covers tips and tricks for apps, operating systems and devices, as well as mobile gaming and Apple Arcade news. Shelby also oversees Tech Tips coverage. Before joining CNET, she covered app news for Download.com and served as a freelancer for Louisville.com.
  • She received the Renau Writing Scholarship in 2016 from the University of Louisville's communication department.
Shelby Brown
Microsoft Surface Laptop Go

Text prediction can make typing a lot faster.

Gabriel Sama/CNET

Microsoft is planning to roll out text prediction support to Word in March, according to the Microsoft 365 roadmap. Text predictions in Word, spotted earlier by tech news website Neowin, will work similarly to Smart Compose in Google Docs. Text prediction uses machine learning to anticipate the word or phrase the author needs to type next for quicker text composition. 

When text predictions are turned on in Microsoft, suggestions will appear in gray font. To accept, you'd press the Tab key or reject it by pressing Esc. Text predictions can also be turned off completely. 

Microsoft has yet to announce whether it plans to allow its text prediction to suggest gender -- "him" and "her," for example. The company had no comment as of yet. Google Smart Compose, in comparison, made the call in 2018 not to suggest gender-based pronouns to avoid potential bias.

See also: 5 ways to lock down your Microsoft 365 account and keep hackers out

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