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May 1, 2023

A preview of Microsoft's AI-powered Designer tool is now available

With AI capabilities, ‘Designer’ simplifies the creative journey of users

Microsoft has announced the public preview launch of its AI-powered design tool, Microsoft Designer. The tool, similar to Canva, is capable of generating designs for presentations, posters, digital postcards, invitations, graphics, and more for social media and other channels. Microsoft Designer uses user-created content and OpenAI's DALL-E 2 text-to-image AI to ideate designs, with options for customization and personalization. Bryan Rognier, GM at Microsoft's 365 Consumer division, announced that since the initial launch in October, Designer's AI models have significantly improved, with the AI capabilities being woven throughout the Designer canvas in delightful ways while maintaining user control.

With the expanded set of features, Designer can now generate written captions and hashtags relevant to social media posts, and create animated visuals with AI-powered text transitions and backgrounds. Additionally, Microsoft plans to add new features, including the ability to place objects in a specific spot in a graphic and automatically fill in the rest of the picture, "erase" and "replace background" options, allowing users to brush over objects or backdrops that were not intended to be in the graphic.

During the preview period, Designer is free and available through the Designer website and Microsoft's Edge browser via the sidebar. Once the app is generally available, it will be included in Microsoft 365 Personal and Family subscriptions, with some functionality available for non-subscribers. Microsoft has also assured users of full usage rights to commercialize the images created with Designer and Image Creator. However, given ongoing court battles involving OpenAI and other startups commercializing generative AI tools, the future of these rights remains uncertain.

Overall, Microsoft Designer's new features provide users with more flexibility and control while creating their designs. The AI-powered captions and hashtags for social media posts, as well as the animated visuals, make the tool an all-in-one design solution for digital marketers and social media managers.

Neil Hodgson Coyle
Neil Hodgson-Coyle
Editorial chief at TechNews180
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