“It’s an episode of Black Mirror”

Windows 11 is preparing to welcome a new feature that is already getting a lot of attention: Recall. If Microsoft welcomes this new feature, Elon Musk, the CEO of Tesla and SpaceX, strongly criticized Recall, calling it an episode of Black Mirror.

Elon Musk // Source: Alain Jocard/AFP via Getty Images

Recall is a new AI feature that will soon be available on Windows 11. It was announced yesterday, during the opening night of Build 2024. But how does it actually work?

First of all, Recall continuously records every action you perform on your PC: the applications you use, the websites you visit, the conversations you have, etc.

Windows Recall // Source:

All this data is then analyzed and classified by the AI, which is able to understand the context of each action and relate them together.

The result: You can perform an AI-powered search, which Microsoft calls “Recall,” and find any information or past action in an instant. Recall will then present you with a snapshot of that period of time, with all the information you need.

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But Recall doesn’t stop there. The tool is also capable of transcribing and translating your meetings and live videos in real time, thanks to the Live Captions functionality. You can then find these transcriptions and translations in your Recall history.

If this function requires power, it is because it is entirely local: the data is not stored in the cloud, which reduces the risks of hacking and data leaks.

Recall on Windows 11: the reactions of Elon Musk and Microsoft

If Microsoft welcomes the arrival of Recall on Windows 11, Elon Musk, the CEO of Tesla and SpaceX, has strongly criticized this feature.

In a post on X, he called Recall an episode of Black Mirror, and said he would disable the feature as soon as it became available.

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For Elon Musk, Recall is a scary privacy tool. By continuously recording all actions performed on a computer, Recall can potentially collect sensitive and personal data and use it for malicious purposes.

Faced with these criticisms, Microsoft wanted to defend itself. In an interview given to Wall Street JournalSatya Nadella, Microsoft CEO, indicated that Recall could only be implemented if it worked locally, without anything other than NPU processes reaching the cloud and being used for spurious purposes.

According to Microsoft, Recall is therefore a secure and reliable tool when it comes to confidentiality. But will that be enough to convince Elon Musk and other Recall detractors? Nothing is less sure.

In any case, Recall will soon be available on Windows 11, and everyone will be able to form their own opinion on this innovative and controversial AI feature.


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