Microsoft to bring Cortana voice assistant to Apple's iOS as third-party app

Posted:
in iPhone edited March 2015
Microsoft is planning to bring Cortana, the voice assistant on Windows phones, to iOS and Android devices sometime after the technology arrives on desktop PCs this fall in Windows 10, according to a new report.




Unlike the Windows versions of the technology, the iOS and Android incarnations of Cortana will be isolated in standalone mobile apps, sources told Reuters. Both phones and tablets on the two platforms should have access.

Microsoft is also said to be working on enhancing Cortana through the results of an artificial intelligence research project dubbed "Einstein." Technology gleaned from the project should be able to read and understand emails, and be integrated into the fall iteration of Cortana.

Data analysis may give the assistant predictive functions similar to Google Now. That would grant it an edge over the iOS 8 edition of Siri, which waits for user input. Microsoft's system might for instance be able to tell a user when to leave for the airport based on an email about an upcoming flight, a person's current GPS location, and ongoing traffic conditions.

Under CEO Satya Nadella, Microsoft has become more willing to bring the company's apps to rival platforms. The Office suite for example is now a prominent fixture on the iPad, where it competes with Apple's iWork titles.
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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 30
    thedbathedba Posts: 482member
    [I]Data analysis may give the assistant predictive functions similar to Google Now. That would grant it an edge over the iOS 8 edition of Siri, which waits for user input. Microsoft's system might for instance be able to tell a user when to leave for the airport based on an email about an upcoming flight, a person's current GPS location, and ongoing traffic conditions.
    [/I]

    This should creep everyone out. Meaning Cortana and/or Google Now have system wide access to all your emails, notifications etc? No thank you.
  • Reply 2 of 30
    Clunky
  • Reply 3 of 30

    Within Cortana's notebook, you can control how "invasive" or how "hands off" you want her to be. This level of customization is key to having Cortana work the way you want her to as a digital assistant.

  • Reply 4 of 30
    MacProMacPro Posts: 18,373member
    If they want to bring Cortana to 'rival' mobile platforms Microsoft have a problem, how many are there out there with <2% market share and those numbers are probably all in Redmond LOL.

    Bringing Cortana to vastly more dominant platform like iOS is another thing. Personally, I doubt many Apple users would want to try.

    I could see some Android users, the older ones that is, that use Scamsung products simply becuase of their life long hatred of Apple, is a possibility. I doubt the younger fandroid generation really know what Microsoft is these days other than memories of older folks with clunky beige boxes and virus checkers.
  • Reply 5 of 30
    ecatsecats Posts: 272member
    I foresee this being just as annoying as Facebook auto adding events to your calendar simply because you were invited to them.
  • Reply 6 of 30
    jcubbsjcubbs Posts: 2member
    Pointless. Why bother?
  • Reply 7 of 30
    quadra 610quadra 610 Posts: 6,744member

    Microsoft's strategy:

     

    Kill Windows Phone. 

     

    I'm waiting for the big "reset" or "fold into ____ division" announcement.

     

    I honestly expected it around two years ago. But, ever Zune-like, MS hangs on to a dead platform way past the advanced stages of decay. 

  • Reply 8 of 30
    singularitysingularity Posts: 1,329member
    jcubbs wrote: »
    Pointless. Why bother?
    A bit like your post :p
    Competing is good and Siri isn't perfect
  • Reply 9 of 30
    SpamSandwichSpamSandwich Posts: 31,417member
    A bit like your post :p
    Competing is good and Siri isn't perfect

    According to a relative of mine who actually has a Windows phone, Cortana is pretty bad.
  • Reply 10 of 30
    mpantonempantone Posts: 1,429member
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by jcubbs View Post



    Pointless. Why bother?



    Microsoft likely wants more opportunities to improve the Cortana service. Windows Phone is not gaining any marketshare, so it makes sense to deploy it on other platforms.

     

    Windows Phone may die, but Cortana could be used in automobile entertainment systems, game consoles, set-top boxes, and other consumer devices.

  • Reply 11 of 30
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by singularity View Post





    A bit like your post image

    Competing is good and Siri isn't perfect



    I find most complaints about Siri come from poor users or people's memories from 2011.

  • Reply 12 of 30
    jungmarkjungmark Posts: 6,716member
    I guess they can't run those Cortana vs Siri ads anymore.
  • Reply 13 of 30
    pfisherpfisher Posts: 758member

    From experience, I believe these cross-platform solutions are done to bring awareness to other platforms.

     

    Because Google is cross-platform, I use their services now with my phone. This prompted me to buy a Chromebook, which I like a lot.

     

    Additionally, Live.com and Office 365 in any browser, along with OneDrive, has shown me how the MS world has changed. I just bought a Dell Venue 8 Pro tablet that runs Windows 8.1 and it's a really nice device. Windows 8.1 is great on a touchscreen. My next laptop combo may be a 2 in 1 machine, such as the Surface or the other Dell solutions.

     

    I was using dropbox, but then Google Docs led me to using Google Drive (cost was a consideration, too). Now that I've seen OneDrive, I like it a lot and have 130 GB free, for now, and I am likely to move to using Office 365 with 1 TB of storage and deprecate Google drive as my primary service. 

     

    If Google and MS had not had cross-platform services and apps, I would probably have never given them a glance. But the fact that they are not proprietary and fractured like Apple, I can use them on any device in my house: from MacBook to Win8 tablet to iPhone to Chromebook. Apple is becoming like MS used to be each day. And MS is becoming much less proprietary.

     

    Anyway, it can be easy to dismiss the competition's products and strategies. However, MS and Google don't do things like this to be altruistic. If you dismiss the competition, you may very well fail miserably as a business. 

  • Reply 14 of 30
    magic_almagic_al Posts: 325member

    Siri gets offended if you say Cortana.

  • Reply 15 of 30



    This will be great for Apple as long as they get access to the search and use data to make Siri better. 

     

    Personally, I would avoid using (stifled laugh) Cortana, anyway based on the name alone (yes, that was a shallow complaint with a little bit of sarcasm, and yes, I know where the name came from.  Didn't play Halo either).  I still hate MS with a passion and would never use anything of theirs unless I had to, like for work or something.  I'm quite happy in my Apple bubble, or "walled garden" or whatever you want to call it.  

  • Reply 16 of 30
    sflocalsflocal Posts: 4,702member
    pfisher wrote: »
    ...product ads...

    *yawn*
  • Reply 17 of 30
    oneof52oneof52 Posts: 110member
    Didn't Tim Cook say that the relationship with IBM was really good and there may be more coming out of it? Someone asked about Watson. Maybe Siri can be enhanced with that type of technology.

    I will say that when I went from iPhone 5S to iphone 6Plus, dictating text has become worse for me. The 5S seemed to be more accurate with iOS7. I also have orientation issues with messaging on the 6Plus. I have to go back to the home screen, rotate the phone, then get back into Messages to get the screen to rotate.
  • Reply 18 of 30
    magman1979magman1979 Posts: 1,141member
    If Microshaft's Cortana is anywhere near as invasive in mining user data and behaviour as Google Now is, then all I can say is yet another big UP YOURS MS, I will stick with Siri.
  • Reply 19 of 30
    tbelltbell Posts: 3,146member
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by TheWhiteFalcon View Post

     



    I find most complaints about Siri come from poor users or people's memories from 2011.




    Siri isn't perfect, but she certainly is improving rapidly. Her response times, knowledge base, and ability to understand you has all been greatly improved. I use her daily to tell me the weather, ask for directions, make appointments, and just general entertainment.

  • Reply 20 of 30
    pfisherpfisher Posts: 758member
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by sflocal View Post





    *yawn*

    Thanks. I was providing a real-world example on how being cross-platform can be a boon to a company and a great strategy.

     

    Until cross-platform service solutions came along, I had personally only used Apple products since 1990 (aside from using PCs for work). The hardware and OS are becoming less important in a lot of ways. Of course, some people don't mind being on one platform only out of personal, choice, ideology, bias, or ignorance. Anyway, an Apple-only world is kind of boring.

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