Cortana Stories March 2, 2020

Cortana is set to be cut from the Microsoft Launcher by the ‘end of April’

We reported late last year that Microsoft was removing its Halo-inspired voice assistant from the Google Play Store in certain regions. Now, Cortana is set to be fully removed from the reasonably popular Microsoft Launcher in the coming months.

Cortana Stories December 8, 2016

Cortana for Android updated with a new design, now works in UK

Even though Google Assistant is the best option Android users have today for a mobile assistant, some still prefer to dive a bit deeper into Microsoft’s ecosystem where Cortana is king queen. Last year Microsoft brought Cortana to Android, and today it’s updating the app with a brand new design and other improvements.

Cortana Stories June 6, 2016

Microsoft Band 2 is company’s latest attempt to persuade Android owners to use Cortana

With Microsoft almost out of the consumer phones business, it’s working harder to find a new home for its intelligent assistant, Cortana. After initially making it available to Android users six months ago, it has now updated its health app so that you can access Cortana through the Band 2 fitness wearable.

With Cortana on your Band, you can access your personal assistant for instant notifications of important events, communications, and voice-active info without reaching for your phone. Speak into the mic on your Band to Cortana to take actions for you …

Cortana Stories May 19, 2016

Cortana for Android now mirrors notifications on Windows 10 PCs for beta testers

Back in April at Microsoft’s Build conference it was revealed that Cortana for Android users would soon be able to have their smartphone notifications show up on a Windows 10 PC. Now it seems that feature is rolling out, at least to some beta testers/Insiders.

Cortana Stories April 29, 2016

cortana In an updated post on the Windows blog, Microsoft has confirmed that it is removing the option to use any browser other than Edge, and any search engine other than Bing, as an integrated option within Cortana. That means if you want to use Cortana for launching web pages or for performing searches in Windows 10, you’ll no longer be able to use Google Chrome or Google Search.

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Cortana Stories April 1, 2016

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This is a pretty cool tidbit to come out of Microsoft’s Build conference. Probably thanks to some much more exciting news from Tesla, it went under the radar entirely. Apparently, the Redmond, Washington-based company is planning to soon let a future version of Windows 10 mirror your Android phone’s notifications by way of the Cortana app (via The Verge)…

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Cortana Stories December 9, 2015

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Microsoft has been offering the Android version of its intelligent assistant Cortana as a small-scale beta since last month, and it’s now ready to go live. Engadget notes that it just hit Google Play.

Don’t expect it to match Google Now for functionality, however – with Google’s own assistant deeply embedded into Android and Cortana a mere app, it will have limited capabilities, but you can at least see how it compares when it comes to answering questions …

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Cortana Stories September 11, 2015

Cortana is currently a lackluster excuse for a voice assistant in the form of a recently-released beta app, but that might change soon. According to a report from the IB Times, Cyanogen — thanks to a partnership that was announced earlier this year — is working with the Redmond company to deeply integrate its voice assistant into the next distribution of its Cyanogen OS… expand full story

Cortana Stories August 24, 2015

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Cortana, Microsoft’s cross-platform voice assistant not dissimilar from Google Now, is today becoming available as an official public beta through Google Play.

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Cortana Stories August 20, 2015

Bing app for Android updated, Marshmallow-like Now on Tap features in tow

As part of its Android M announcement, Google showed off its Now on Tap feature which will allow you to get contextual information within any app or screen just by pressing the home button for a few seconds. With Marshmallow not set to hit the public until later this year, it gave Microsoft a chance to beat Google to it. And it has done just that in its latest Bing app for Android.

Cortana Stories August 10, 2015

We first gave Cortana beta for Android a try a few weeks ago, and I just wasn’t impressed. Our own Cam Bunton went on to give it a deeper look and a comparison to Google Now and was a little less cynical than I, but overall neither os us were convinced that it is something that Android users need. I would argue that that’s still the case, but Microsoft clearly hasn’t given up yet. With a recent update to the app, you can now set Cortana as the home button shortcut. expand full story

Cortana Stories July 17, 2015

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Microsoft recently released its Cortana digital assistant as a beta app, and we’ve been able to get our hands on the preview. Apart from its Material-like design, the app looks, performs, and acts just like the Cortana on Windows Phone. You can ask it to set reminders, give you directions and weather information, or do simple arithmetic. It has its limitations and doesn’t feel quite as intuitive or in-depth as Google Now or Siri, but it has its uses.

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Microsoft announced last month that its Cortana voice assistant would be coming to Android in beta at some point in July, but it looks like the APK has managed to leak out a bit early. We grabbed it as soon as we could, and decided to give it a look. And our first impression, frankly, is that there’s not really anything special about Cortana — especially when Android has Google Now, Hound, and other competitors to pick from.

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Cortana Stories June 16, 2015

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Following up on the recent announcement that Microsoft would be bringing its Cortana personal assistant software to Android (a move originally scheduled to happen at the end of  this month), the company said today that it will be launching a beta version of the app next month instead.

The app’s feature set has been expanded upon, revealing that the system works across platforms like Windows 10 and Xbox One as well as mobile platforms like Android. Cortana will be connected to the user’s Microsoft account in order to keep the cross-platform features in sync.

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Cortana Stories May 26, 2015

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Reuters reported back in March that Microsoft planned to bring its Google Now competitor Cortana to Android, and Microsoft has now officially confirmed this in a blog post.

Today, we’re announcing a Cortana application for Android phones and for iPhones which works as a companion to Cortana on your Windows 10 PC. The ‘Phone Companion’ app on the PC will help you install the Cortana app from the Google Play or Apple App Store onto your phone so you’ll be able to take the intelligence of Cortana with you, wherever you go […]

The Cortana companion will be available for Android phones at the end of June and for iPhones later this year.

While Microsoft is pitching the intelligent assistant as a companion to a Windows PC, it appears that most of the functionality will work in the Android app without the need for a Windows device, Microsoft saying that you can “make the same queries, ask the same questions” in the standalone app …  expand full story

Cortana Stories March 13, 2015

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Microsoft is planning on making the next generation of its voice-recognition system, Cortana, available on Android and iOS devices sometime after the fall, reports Reuters. The focus, says the company, will be on an intelligent assistant that predicts the help you need, rather than simply responding to user requests.

Cortana could tell a mobile phone user when to leave for the airport, days after it read an email and realized the user was planning a flight. It would automatically check flight status, determine where the phone is located using GPS, and checking traffic conditions.

Google has of course long majored on this kind of proactive approach through its Google Now service, which aims to work out what you will want to know when, but Microsoft believes that integrating everything into the digital assistant is the future …  expand full story

Cortana Stories December 1, 2014

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Google and Santa have a lot in common. They know when you are sleeping/awake. They also give you cool stuff but also freak you out a little bit sometimes.

Well, Google also keeps tabs on Santa and for the umpteenth consecutive year Google is following Santa on his round the world trip from the North Pole on Christmas.  This year’s tracker has some fun games to play every day but this year you might actually learn a thing or 2:

This year, you’ll find an edu touch — new geography games let you explore local holiday traditions, while a new coding project teaches basic JavaScript as you help Santa and the reindeer navigate the map. Learn how to say “Santa” in different languages, and connect with nonprofits around the world.

Of course, fan favorites are making a return this year — you can send a call from Santa to your friends and family, display Santa’s journey on the TV screen with Chromecast, and play gumdrop and reindeer racing games. You’ll be able to play each game on desktop, mobile web, or on the Santa Tracker Android app.

Jump on board with the Android app, Chrome extension or website or follow Google Maps on Google+, Facebook and Twitter in the countdown #tracksanta.

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Cortana Stories October 8, 2014

Google Now tops Siri and Cortana in a 3,000+ question challenge (video)

Google Now, Siri and Cortana all have their respective followings, but which application is the best at answering real world questions? Recently, the folks at Stone Temple Consulting pit the three platforms each other in a 3,086 query challenge packed with questions that required direct answers.

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