Microsoft shutting down Cortana app on iPhone and iPad in 2021

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Microsoft is shutting down Cortana across multiple platforms, including Apple's iOS and iPadOS, as part of a strategy shift to a more productivity-focused assistant.

Credit: Microsoft
Credit: Microsoft


The Seattle-based tech company first withdrew the Cortana for iOS app from a number of regions early in 2020. now, it is announcing plans to shut down the iOS and Android versions of the apps entirely.

In a support document, Microsoft announced that it would remove Cortana from Harman Kardon speakers and Surface Headphones products in 2021. It added that it'll stop supporting Cortana for mobile "because you can now manage your calendar and email, join meetings, and do so much more via our new productivity-focused experiences."

That includes changes made to Microsoft's digital assistant that repurpose it to become part of the company's broader suite of Microsoft 365 products. In other words, it will no longer be a Siri or Alexa competitor.

Instead, Cortana will become a productivity-type assistant baked into apps like Outlook and Teams. Though it'll be as feature-rich as the existing version, Microsoft is apparently hoping to refine Cortana to be a complement to its other products.

"We've spent a lot of time thinking through this transition and understand that these changes may be disruptive to some of our customers," Microsoft wrote. "We look forward to continuing to innovate on ways Cortana can help you navigate the modern workplace so you can save time and focus on the things that matter most in your day."

As part of the strategy shift, Microsoft said it is offering one $50 Microsoft gift card per active Harman Kardon Invoke speaker for users who sent a voice request to the digital assistant -- but only after July 31, 2019 and before Friday's announcement.

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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 37
    melgrossmelgross Posts: 33,036member
    The fact is, nobody uses it.
    razorpitlordjohnwhorfinlkruppSpamSandwichfallenjtentropyschiaivanhdysamoriawatto_cobra
  • Reply 2 of 37
    BeatsBeats Posts: 2,532member
    "because you can now manage your calendar and email, join meetings, and do so much more via our new productivity-focused experiences."

    Because no one wanted to use your Siri knockoff.
    williamlondonwatto_cobra
  • Reply 3 of 37
    KITAKITA Posts: 370member

    That includes changes made to Microsoft's digital assistant that repurpose it to become part of the company's broader suite of Microsoft 365 products. In other words, it will no longer be a Siri or Alexa competitor.

    This makes sense given the way their software/services are typically used.

    No mention of Google Assistant as a competitor?
    ctt_zhwilliamlondon
  • Reply 4 of 37
    dewmedewme Posts: 3,834member
    Six, maybe seven, people are going to be very upset. 
    razorpitfastasleepivanhwilliamlondonh4y3swatto_cobramuthuk_vanalingam
  • Reply 5 of 37
    wonkothesanewonkothesane Posts: 1,551member
     productivity-type assistant”. Now, what does this remind me of?


    pscooter63BeatsajlchiaMplsPTRAGdysamoriawatto_cobraexceptionhandlerFileMakerFeller
  • Reply 6 of 37
    pscooter63pscooter63 Posts: 1,056member
    Wonko, the first thing I thought of, and you beat me to the punch.

    ”It looks like you’re trying to use me like Siri, can I help?”
    razorpitBeatsMplsPwatto_cobra
  • Reply 7 of 37
    BeatsBeats Posts: 2,532member
    KITA said:

    That includes changes made to Microsoft's digital assistant that repurpose it to become part of the company's broader suite of Microsoft 365 products. In other words, it will no longer be a Siri or Alexa competitor.

    This makes sense given the way their software/services are typically used.

    No mention of Google Assistant as a competitor?

    Not sure if Google Assistant is even relevant anymore?
    williamlondonwatto_cobra
  • Reply 8 of 37
    bulk001bulk001 Posts: 654member
    Wonko, the first thing I thought of, and you beat me to the punch.

    ”It looks like you’re trying to use me like Siri, can I help?”
    If you are going to imitate a voice assistant, at least imitate one that actually works! Siri is getting better but still has a long way to go to compete with Google Assistant. 
    KITAtokyojimuwilliamlondon
  • Reply 9 of 37
    red oakred oak Posts: 888member
    LOL 

    Microsoft is so over valued.    Wait until Apple Silicon takes 30% unit share of the mid and high range PC market 
    williamlondonwatto_cobra
  • Reply 10 of 37
    BeatsBeats Posts: 2,532member
    bulk001 said:
    Wonko, the first thing I thought of, and you beat me to the punch.

    ”It looks like you’re trying to use me like Siri, can I help?”
    If you are going to imitate a voice assistant, at least imitate one that actually works! Siri is getting better but still has a long way to go to compete with Google Assistant. 


    The myth has been disproven for years. They all excel at different tasks.
    pscooter63watto_cobra
  • Reply 11 of 37
    Beats said:
    KITA said:

    That includes changes made to Microsoft's digital assistant that repurpose it to become part of the company's broader suite of Microsoft 365 products. In other words, it will no longer be a Siri or Alexa competitor.

    This makes sense given the way their software/services are typically used.

    No mention of Google Assistant as a competitor?

    Not sure if Google Assistant is even relevant anymore?
    It is very relevant ... but as this blog hates Google far more than it hates Amazon - a leading seller/promoter of Apple products that don't directly compete with Apple (no one who would consider buying an $750 iPad, $300 HomePod or $150 Apple TV would buy a $60 Kindle tablet, $50 Echo Dot or $35 Fire Stick instead) - it will never acknowledge it.

    Remember: this is the same bunch that refused to so much as concede that Google was making a profit off Android until the Oracle trial made it impossible to deny any longer ... and this was with Android having 85% global market share by then.
    williamlondonmuthuk_vanalingam
  • Reply 12 of 37
    payecopayeco Posts: 449member
    Beats said:
    bulk001 said:
    Wonko, the first thing I thought of, and you beat me to the punch.

    ”It looks like you’re trying to use me like Siri, can I help?”
    If you are going to imitate a voice assistant, at least imitate one that actually works! Siri is getting better but still has a long way to go to compete with Google Assistant. 


    The myth has been disproven for years. They all excel at different tasks.
    On device audio processing coming in iOS 14 is going to make a big difference. If you have a weak or flakey network connection Siri can have a lot of issues. Sometimes I’ll even have a strong, fast connection, via WiFi or LTE, and I’ll try to say something to Siri and it just sits there like it’s analyzing what I said. Sometimes I can turn airplane mode on and off to fix it, sometimes not. That should all hopefully be fixed in iOS 14. Hopefully that is coming to HomePod and tvOS too.

    They also need to work on Siri for HomePod. There is way too much shit I ask that Siri just comes back with “I can’t get the answer to that on HomePod”. Yet you can ask Alexa or Google Assistance the same question and they’re able to give you sufficient verbal answers. Most frustrating, sometimes, after it says you can’t get the answer on HomePod, you’ll ask Siri on your phone and the response it gives is all text! Why couldn’t it have read that back to me?
  • Reply 13 of 37
    Beats said:
    bulk001 said:
    Wonko, the first thing I thought of, and you beat me to the punch.

    ”It looks like you’re trying to use me like Siri, can I help?”
    If you are going to imitate a voice assistant, at least imitate one that actually works! Siri is getting better but still has a long way to go to compete with Google Assistant. 


    The myth has been disproven for years. They all excel at different tasks.
    Yeah, no. If it was the "myth" that you claimed then Apple wouldn't have made a number of moves like this: https://www.theverge.com/2018/4/3/17195076/google-ai-chief-john-giannandrea-joining-apple-machine-learning-siri

    Apple also wouldn't have flat out acknowledged that their HomePod wasn't even going to try to have the Siri functionality to match that of Alexa or Assistant on their smart speakers and that it was going to focus on "a premium audio experience instead." Pretty much the only people who claim that this is a "myth" are certain Apple fans. 

    But it doesn't matter really. Excellence at something like Alexa and Google Assistant requires a combination of top software (not OS but application software) and top cloud functionality. Apple is a hardware company. So neither is ever going to be Apple's wheelhouse. When they want/need to get better at a specific software product they address it by acqui-hiring (and the programmers generally move on when the job is done) and Apple's iCloud product is actually hosted by AWS with and Google Cloud Platform. 

    So Apple not being as good at a cloud software/service products as cloud/software service companies like Amazon and Google is the equivalent of, well, everyone knowing that Google's Pixel phones don't have the hardware to compete with Apple or Samsung. They don't even try ... Google openly advertises that they make up with for their hardware deficiencies with AI and software optimization. (Which ... doesn't work anywhere near as good as Google or the maybe 2 million loyal Pixel fans want to believe it does.) 

    And besides, what is at stake here anyway? What iPhone, iPad or MacBook fan is going to buy an Android phone, tablet or Chromebook because Google Assistant is better? Makes no sense when the hardware and OS offers so many other benefits to Apple device buyers. Apple merely wants to keep Siri from falling too far behind and that is good enough.
    williamlondonh4y3smuthuk_vanalingam
  • Reply 14 of 37
    BeatsBeats Posts: 2,532member
    Beats said:
    KITA said:

    That includes changes made to Microsoft's digital assistant that repurpose it to become part of the company's broader suite of Microsoft 365 products. In other words, it will no longer be a Siri or Alexa competitor.

    This makes sense given the way their software/services are typically used.

    No mention of Google Assistant as a competitor?

    Not sure if Google Assistant is even relevant anymore?
    It is very relevant ... but as this blog hates Google far more than it hates Amazon - a leading seller/promoter of Apple products that don't directly compete with Apple (no one who would consider buying an $750 iPad, $300 HomePod or $150 Apple TV would buy a $60 Kindle tablet, $50 Echo Dot or $35 Fire Stick instead) - it will never acknowledge it.

    Remember: this is the same bunch that refused to so much as concede that Google was making a profit off Android until the Oracle trial made it impossible to deny any longer ... and this was with Android having 85% global market share by then.

    So knockoffs from Amazon are different from Knockoffs from Android? Amazon is a DIRECT competitor as they sell knockoff iPads with Siri functionality. Amazons iPads are outselling those from Android. Most people buy FREE-$20 buck dots so they don't need a HomePod, same with FireStick. Everyone knows that people buy FireSticks and Rokus BECAUSE of price. What the F***. How can you be this deluisional? Yet you dismiss knockoff iPhones even though they do EXACTLY the same thing Amazon does: undercut Apple.

    Google doesn't sell Android. Who gave you that idea?

    Fu**ing ridiculous.

    Edit: just read your name. You're the guy who posts ridiculous crap and gets destroyed in every thread.
    edited July 2020 williamlondonwatto_cobra
  • Reply 15 of 37
    melgrossmelgross Posts: 33,036member
    red oak said:
    LOL 

    Microsoft is so over valued.    Wait until Apple Silicon takes 30% unit share of the mid and high range PC market 
    Um, I can’t agree with that. It’s pretty well known that Microsoft is slowly depreciating Windows as a main source of revenue and focus for its software. Nadella has changed the company to a cloud and applications company. It’s why we see most of their software for mobile on iOS, and has been for some time. It’s also why Microsoft upgraded the macOS version of Office. It’s also why Office will be one of the first, along with Photoshop, major apps on Apple’s new Apple Silicon platform. Microsoft sees the future as well as anyone these days, and they see that future as not being Windows. In fact, when considering all of the phones, tablets and other computers being sold every year, they see Windows as a minor player, becoming even more minor.

    when nadella took over, I was thinking of investing in Microsoft for the first time. Things came up, and I forgot about it, then it was a bit too late.
    lkruppwatto_cobramuthuk_vanalingam
  • Reply 16 of 37
    BeatsBeats Posts: 2,532member
    Beats said:
    bulk001 said:
    Wonko, the first thing I thought of, and you beat me to the punch.

    ”It looks like you’re trying to use me like Siri, can I help?”
    If you are going to imitate a voice assistant, at least imitate one that actually works! Siri is getting better but still has a long way to go to compete with Google Assistant. 


    The myth has been disproven for years. They all excel at different tasks.
    Yeah, no. If it was the "myth" that you claimed then Apple wouldn't have made a number of moves like this: https://www.theverge.com/2018/4/3/17195076/google-ai-chief-john-giannandrea-joining-apple-machine-learning-siri

    Apple also wouldn't have flat out acknowledged that their HomePod wasn't even going to try to have the Siri functionality to match that of Alexa or Assistant on their smart speakers and that it was going to focus on "a premium audio experience instead." Pretty much the only people who claim that this is a "myth" are certain Apple fans. 

    But it doesn't matter really. Excellence at something like Alexa and Google Assistant requires a combination of top software (not OS but application software) and top cloud functionality. Apple is a hardware company. So neither is ever going to be Apple's wheelhouse. When they want/need to get better at a specific software product they address it by acqui-hiring (and the programmers generally move on when the job is done) and Apple's iCloud product is actually hosted by AWS with and Google Cloud Platform. 

    So Apple not being as good at a cloud software/service products as cloud/software service companies like Amazon and Google is the equivalent of, well, everyone knowing that Google's Pixel phones don't have the hardware to compete with Apple or Samsung. They don't even try ... Google openly advertises that they make up with for their hardware deficiencies with AI and software optimization. (Which ... doesn't work anywhere near as good as Google or the maybe 2 million loyal Pixel fans want to believe it does.) 

    And besides, what is at stake here anyway? What iPhone, iPad or MacBook fan is going to buy an Android phone, tablet or Chromebook because Google Assistant is better? Makes no sense when the hardware and OS offers so many other benefits to Apple device buyers. Apple merely wants to keep Siri from falling too far behind and that is good enough.

    Talk about bad reading comprehension. A cheap laugh indeed.
    williamlondonwatto_cobra
  • Reply 17 of 37
    BeatsBeats Posts: 2,532member
    payeco said:
    Beats said:
    bulk001 said:
    Wonko, the first thing I thought of, and you beat me to the punch.

    ”It looks like you’re trying to use me like Siri, can I help?”
    If you are going to imitate a voice assistant, at least imitate one that actually works! Siri is getting better but still has a long way to go to compete with Google Assistant. 


    The myth has been disproven for years. They all excel at different tasks.
    On device audio processing coming in iOS 14 is going to make a big difference. If you have a weak or flakey network connection Siri can have a lot of issues. Sometimes I’ll even have a strong, fast connection, via WiFi or LTE, and I’ll try to say something to Siri and it just sits there like it’s analyzing what I said. Sometimes I can turn airplane mode on and off to fix it, sometimes not. That should all hopefully be fixed in iOS 14. Hopefully that is coming to HomePod and tvOS too.

    They also need to work on Siri for HomePod. There is way too much shit I ask that Siri just comes back with “I can’t get the answer to that on HomePod”. Yet you can ask Alexa or Google Assistance the same question and they’re able to give you sufficient verbal answers. Most frustrating, sometimes, after it says you can’t get the answer on HomePod, you’ll ask Siri on your phone and the response it gives is all text! Why couldn’t it have read that back to me?

    Apple should be ashamed of themselves for creating something that is on par with the knockoffs. Apple should be at least 2 years ahead of the knockoffs. Apple needs to update siri and Homepods ASAP already.

    The myth that "anti-Apple company X is better" has been dis-proven multiple times but it will not die until Apple is 10x more efficient.

    Who wants to bet that "Anti-company X is better" will hit Apple Silicon? Apple is held to a higher standard than the copycats.
    williamlondonwatto_cobra
  • Reply 18 of 37
    And this is a case study in what NOT to do in order to foster beans loyalty. 

    Apple? They research, develop, test, perfect, and launch. Then refine. 

    Ms? The think up something that seems “cool,” develop a bit, launch, beta test in users, and then abandon when it doesn’t gain traction. 

    Remember the Zune? 

    That’s MS. You buy into their ecosystem and the entire existence of thst setup is in doubt. Waste of time and money. 

    Apple? 

    Apple TV is still around and better than ever even though it was only a “hobby”

    when you buy into an Apple system, you don’t end up regretting it shortly thereafter. 

    And that’s why Microsoft has been in decline and Apple  has been surging. 
    adaeonpscooter63williamlondonwatto_cobra
  • Reply 19 of 37
    BeatsBeats Posts: 2,532member
    And this is a case study in what NOT to do in order to foster beans loyalty. 

    Apple? They research, develop, test, perfect, and launch. Then refine. 

    Ms? The think up something that seems “cool,” develop a bit, launch, beta test in users, and then abandon when it doesn’t gain traction. 

    Remember the Zune? 

    That’s MS. You buy into their ecosystem and the entire existence of thst setup is in doubt. Waste of time and money. 

    Apple? 

    Apple TV is still around and better than ever even though it was only a “hobby”

    when you buy into an Apple system, you don’t end up regretting it shortly thereafter. 

    And that’s why Microsoft has been in decline and Apple  has been surging. 

    "Ms? The think up something that seems “cool,”"

    Zune and Cortana were something they thought up? They just copy pasted Apple's hard work.
    watto_cobra
  • Reply 20 of 37
    Beats said:
    And this is a case study in what NOT to do in order to foster beans loyalty. 

    Apple? They research, develop, test, perfect, and launch. Then refine. 

    Ms? The think up something that seems “cool,” develop a bit, launch, beta test in users, and then abandon when it doesn’t gain traction. 

    Remember the Zune? 

    That’s MS. You buy into their ecosystem and the entire existence of thst setup is in doubt. Waste of time and money. 

    Apple? 

    Apple TV is still around and better than ever even though it was only a “hobby”

    when you buy into an Apple system, you don’t end up regretting it shortly thereafter. 

    And that’s why Microsoft has been in decline and Apple  has been surging. 

    "Ms? The think up something that seems “cool,”"

    Zune and Cortana were something they thought up? They just copy pasted Apple's hard work.
    Hey man. I totally agree. Just like Samsung’s tablets and smartphones. But MS tried to be “cool” with the name Vota s from their popular video game and with an artsy UI (for the time) with the Zune (really stupid name though. Even at the time). But MS never really stands by anything other than Office, Windows, and Xbox.
    Beatswatto_cobra
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