Cortana and Alexa may have called it quits

by Don Sharpe
Don Sharpe
Don Sharpe
Don has been writing professionally for over 10 years now, but his passion for the written word started back in his elementary school days. His work has been... read more
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  • Microsoft had made plans to integrate Cortana with Amazon’s Alexa voice assistant.
  • Cortana service is now being declined, and Alexa takes over.
  • The service seems to have been dwarfed a little over two months ago, but users may not have noticed,

If you are not a fan of Cortana, you probably haven’t noticed that Microsoft removed the service. However, if you have tried to use Cortana on an Amazon device, you have probably noticed only Alexa is available.

Back in 2017, Microsoft and Amazon entered into a partnership that would see the two voice assistants come together. This meant that an Amazon device could summon Cortana on any Microsoft program.

It now seems that the partnership is no longer active as of September 18. According to Microsoft, they ended the Cortana experience to shift the resources and focus on Microsoft 365.

Customers have been informed through in-product notifications

If you are one to ignore notifications, you have probably missed the announcement by Microsoft. The company says it has begun notifying its customers of the changes.

The move is not shocking because users did not jump on Cortana as was expected. The numbers were not encouraging at all.

Actual retirements

Although users may be getting wind of the information now, Microsoft actually began retiring Cortana for iOS and Android in 2020.

Third-party support for Cortana skills was shut in September 2020. The voice-activated AI is the only remnant in Windows 11, and even then, it now has to be installed manually. It is still available on the Microsoft Store.

Basic abilities for Cortana on Windows 10 have been dwarfed to the extent that functions such as decreasing volume or shutting down the PC are no longer available.

Focusing on other issues

Microsoft has taken a new direction with Cortana. It now aims to focus on business productivity software, particularly involving Microsoft 365 and Outlook.

Alexa will be responsible for taking care of more personal needs. According to Microsoft’s spokesperson, 

“You are still able to access all your favorite Alexa features on your Windows and Xbox devices and Cortana via Microsoft 365 apps and services, as well as access Microsoft services, including Outlook calendar integration, through Alexa-enabled devices.”

Do you feel that the functions are now more limited that Cortana has been axed? Share your sentiments in the comment section below.