Microsoft's Windows Recall shown working on PC without AI hardware

Microsoft's Windows Recall feature, which is restricted to Copilot+ PCs with NPU hardware, has been shown running on a PC without AI hardware.

1 minute & 24 seconds read time

Microsoft wants people to move off Windows 10 and move onto Windows 11, and one of the ways the company intends to attract customers to its latest operating system is AI-powered PCs - and the exclusive features that come with them.

Microsoft's Windows Recall shown working on PC without AI hardware 65156165156

Microsoft only recently announced a selection of AI PCs in the form of new Copilot+ laptops. These laptops are different from traditional versions as they feature a Neural Processing Unit (NPU), which is a piece of hardware dedicated to running AI tasks locally. Microsoft has locked many, if not all of its of Copilot+'s attractive features behind this hardware requirement in a bid to entice customers to go out and purchase a new Copilot+ PC.

One of the most talked about Copilot+ features is Windows Recall, which enables a user to ask the Copilot AI in natural language to show them what they were doing on the PC at specific times. For example, if a user at 4pm forgot what they were doing at 1pm they would be able to ask the AI and it would show them what was on their desktop at 1pm. Recall is able to create this timeline of a users desktop by taking screenshots of the desktop every few minutes, which are then stored locally.

However, Microsoft's system requirements for Recall - 16GB of RAM and a Copilot+ certified PC - may be closer to loose guidelines than strict requirements as a Windows user has managed to get Recall to work on a non-Copilot PC. The Windows engineer goes by the name Albacore, who posted to Mastadon saying they got Recall to work on a "Snapdragon 7c+ Gen3, 3.4 GB of RAM, no NPU in sight."

The engineer also noted, "It's surprisingly good even on something this low spec."

Furthermore, Albacore said, "I am able to save snapshots, OCR them, access the timeline, and perform text as well as visual searches across it, all offline."

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Jak joined the TweakTown team in 2017 and has since reviewed 100s of new tech products and kept us informed daily on the latest science, space, and artificial intelligence news. Jak's love for science, space, and technology, and, more specifically, PC gaming, began at 10 years old. It was the day his dad showed him how to play Age of Empires on an old Compaq PC. Ever since that day, Jak fell in love with games and the progression of the technology industry in all its forms. Instead of typical FPS, Jak holds a very special spot in his heart for RTS games.

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