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Innovation

GitHub Copilot, Microsoft's AI pair-programming service, is generally available

The pair-programming service is available for $10 per user per month or $100 per user per year. There are a couple of free options too.
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Written by Mary Jo Foley, Senior Contributing Editor on
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Credit: Microsoft

Microsoft's GitHub Copilot pair-programming service is generally available to all developers as of June 21. The service costs $10 per user per month or $100 per user per year. Microsoft launched GitHub Copilot in preview last year.

GitHub Copilot suggests code to developers right in their editors, with the AI component acting like a pair-programming assistant. Suggestions are meant to match a project's context and style conventions and allow developers what to accept, reject or edit.

GitHub Copilot is a Visual Studio Code extension plus a back-end service. It works with a variety of frameworks and languages. Microsoft officials said the technical preview works especially well with Python, JavaScript, TypeScript, Ruby, and Go but works with many other languages, as well.

Microsoft and OpenAI collaborated to build GitHub Copilot, which is based on OpenAI's Codex. Codex was trained on billions of publicly available source code lines -- including code in public repositories on GitHub -- and on natural language, which means it can understand both programming and human languages.

In addition to the two paid plan offerings, Microsoft is offering a 60-day free trial of GitHub Copilot. The company also is making GitHub Copilot free to use for verified students and maintainers of popular open-source projects. Microsoft officials said they will begin offering GitHub Copilot to companies later this year.

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