Cortana is Microsoft’s virtual assistant app included with Windows 10. Until now, there have been few notable alternatives to Cortana on Windows. Acer has announced that the Amazon Alexa virtual assistant will come pre-installed on its Spin line of Windows 10 convertible laptops by the end of this month. Thus, Alexa is making its Windows debut to take on Cortana within Microsoft’s own platform.
Amazon first launched Alexa for the Echo speakers in 2014, and the company has conceded that its voiced-enabled virtual assistant had eclipsed expectations. Since its initial Echo release, Amazon has expanded the Alexa to numerous devices, which include phones, tablets and media boxes. The Fire TV, Fire HD tablets and Huawei Mate 9 mobile are a few of the devices that incorporate Alexa.
Now Amazon has partnered with Acer to extend Alexa to the Spin line of convertible laptops (or notebooks). One Acer president, Mr. Kao, stated:
The Acer Spin 3 and Spin 5 convertible notebooks are the ideal products for the industry debut of Alexa voice functionality on notebooks. We are thrilled to be the first to market with these flexible systems, which feature industry-leading audio and the latest technologies for convenient, time-saving and intuitive interactions.
Alexa will come pre-installed with both the updated Acer Spin 5 and 3 as of May 23 and May 26, and the Nitro 5 Spin will also get the Amazon virtual assistant a little later. The Acer Spin 5 will provide users with four far-field microphones to utilize for Alexa, while the other Acer convertibles include dual near-field microphones. With the Alexa Windows 10 virtual assistant, Spin 3 and 5 users will be able to check the weather, set up lists, play music and podcasts, get sport updates and more besides via microphone.
The arrival of Alexa on Windows will also enhance the appeal of Acer‘s Spin 3 and 5 laptops. Those are convertible 2-in-1 laptops & tablets with relatively modest specifications that Acer launched in 2017. Alexa is one of the market-leading virtual assistants alongside Google Assistant, and it will no doubt be a more preferable alternative to Cortana for many Spin users.
However, Alexa isn’t entirely going head to head with Cortana. Microsoft and Amazon announced last year that they plan to enable their virtual assistants to integrate with each other across devices. That will ensure that users can utilize Alexa features with Cortana and the other way around. This would enable users to open Cortana on Amazon devices such as the Echo.
With Alexa pre-installed on Acer convertible laptops, it will no doubt now become one of the biggest virtual assistants for Windows. This software guide tells you about some of the other notable Cortana alternatives for Windows.
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