Amazon recently introduced CodeWhisperer, an AI-powered assistant that has caught the attention of developers everywhere. Naturally, I had to check how it compares to the highly regarded and popular GitHub Copilot.
In this article, we will explore the features of both tools, compare their capabilities, and determine which is the best fit for you.
Let's dive in 🚀
Amazon CodeWhisperer vs. GitHub Copilot: Quick Summary
Here is a summary table for a clearer comparison so you know what tool is better for your needs:
|Amazon CodeWhisperer||GitHub Copilot|
|Security Scanning Features||✅||❌|
|Supported Languages||Supports all popular languages ✅||Supports all popular languages ✅|
|Supported IDEs||Visual Studio Code, JetBrains IDEs, AWS Cloud9, and the AWS Lambda console||Neovim, JetBrains IDEs, Visual Studio, and Visual Studio Code|
|Price||Entirely free for individual use||$10/month or $100/year for individuals, $19/user/month for businesses|
What Is Amazon CodeWhisperer?
Amazon CodeWhisperer is an advanced AI-powered coding assistant designed to help developers in writing code more efficiently. CodeWhisperer simplifies the development process by providing real-time code suggestions tailored to your current project.
Whether you're writing a single line or a complete function, AI models analyze your existing code and comments, generating context-aware recommendations that can significantly boost your productivity.
With Amazon CodeWhisperer, you can focus on what matters most while the AI takes care of the repetitive and time-consuming tasks.
Some of the key features of Amazon CodeWhisperer include:
- Real-time code suggestions for 15 programming languages, covering the most popular options in the software development world.
- Easy integration with popular integrated development environments (IDEs), such as VS Code or IntelliJ IDEA.
- Context-aware recommendations based on your existing own code and comments.
- Entirely free for individual use, making it accessible to a wide range of developers.
- CodeWhisperer can flag or filter code suggestions that resemble open-source training data. This feature lets you review and provide attribution to the original open-source project by adding its repository URL and license information.
- Security scanning features to help identify potential vulnerabilities in your code.
What Is GitHub Copilot?
GitHub Copilot is another advanced AI tool - a programming assistant that helps developers write code more quickly and with less effort.
GitHub Copilot uses OpenAI Codex to provide real-time code and function suggestions based on context from comments and existing code. It can be easily integrated into various editors, including Neovim, JetBrains IDEs, or Visual Studio Code.
Some of the features that GitHub Copilot has are:
- Real-time code suggestions, turning natural language prompts into code.
- Compatibility with dozens of languages, thanks to its training on billions of lines of code.
- Context-aware recommendations that fit the project's style patterns.
- Two pricing plans: Copilot for Individuals ($10/month or $100/year) and Copilot for Business ($19/user/month), with added benefits for business users.
- Direct integration with popular editors like Neovim, JetBrains IDEs, Visual Studio, and Visual Studio Code.
GitHub Copilot vs. Amazon CodeWhisperer - Key Differences
As you've probably noticed, GitHub Copilot and Amazon CodeWhisperer are pretty similar. With either tool, you describe the intended function of your code, and the AI-driven assistant generates a useful code snippet that you can immediately use.
But there are some differences. Let's take a look at the most significant ones:
GitHub Copilot offers a subscription-based model with two pricing tiers: Copilot for Individuals ($10/month or $100/year) and Copilot for Business ($19/user/month), providing added benefits for business users.
On the other hand, Amazon CodeWhisperer is entirely free for personal use, making it an attractive option for developers looking to experiment with AI assistance without spending money.
Supported Programming Languages
In contrast, GitHub Copilot was trained on all languages in public repositories. But the code quality of suggestions for each language may differ depending on the popularity of this language.
Integration with IDEs
Amazon CodeWhisperer is part of the AWS Toolkit for Visual Studio Code, JetBrains IDEs, AWS Cloud9, and the AWS Lambda console.
Meanwhile, GitHub Copilot covers editors like Neovim, JetBrains IDEs, Visual Studio, and Visual Studio Code.
CodeWhisperer has a feature to flag or filter code suggestions that resemble open-source training data. This allows you to review and add attribution for the associated open-source project's repository URL and license.
This increases transparency and helps you avoid potential licensing issues.
CodeWhisperer can also help enhance code security by scanning your code to detect hard-to-find vulnerabilities and providing code suggestions to fix them immediately.
Which Tool Is for You?
Amazon CodeWhisperer just got released, so we still need some time to fully discover this tool. But it is completely free for personal use, making it a really attractive option. Copilot offers a 30-day free trial, so you can always test both these assistants and see which one you like better.
I think that right now, Amazon's unique features make it a quite appealing choice. But I also keep my eye on GitHub Copilot X. It'll be an updated version of Copilot with innovative features such as built-in chat and voice command recognition, which could be a game-changer.
How Do I Install CodeWhisperer in VsCode?
To install CodeWhisperer in VS Code, follow these steps:
- Open VS Code and click on the Extensions icon in the sidebar.
- Search for "AWS Toolkit" in the search bar.
- Install the extension.
- Once the installation is complete, restart VS Code.
- Click the "AWS" button in the sidebar and add a connection to AWS.
You can now start using CodeWhisperer in VS Code by opening a file in one of the supported programming languages and clicking on the "CodeWhisperer" button in the toolbar.
What Is an AI Coding Assistant?
An AI coding assistant is a tool that leverages the power of artificial intelligence to assist developers in writing code. Think of it as your personal coding buddy that offers suggestions for code completion, detects syntax errors, and provides real-time debugging assistance.
AI coding assistants are designed to streamline the coding process, save time, and simplify developers' lives by automating repetitive tasks and providing code recommendations. Some of the most popular AI coding assistants are GitHub Copilot, TabNine, and Amazon CodeWhisperer.
What Are the Best Alternatives to Copilot?
TabNine is one the most popular Copilot alternatives. It's an AI-powered code completion tool that suggests code as you type and supports many programming languages.
Codeium is a Copilot alternative and a powerful AI coding assistant with features like search or in-built chat. It's also free!
Another example alternative to Copilot is CodeWhisperer. It is another AI coding assistant that supports several popular programming languages and can detect hard-to-find vulnerabilities in your code.
It's clear that AI-powered coding assistants are becoming increasingly popular in the development world.
The launch of Amazon CodeWhisperer and the continued success of GitHub Copilot show that developers are eager to explore new ways of improving their productivity and simplifying their workflow.
I hope this comparison has provided some valuable insights and helped you decide which tool is the best for you.
Happy coding! ✌