Microsoft has decided to end Cortana for iOS and Android by January 31st, 2020. The app, as well as the launcher for Android, is expected to be removed from the respective app stores after the timeline. The second-largest company in the world has announced this message on the support page of Cortana in the UK, Canada, and Australia.
No such announcement on the US support page of Microsoft is made at the time of writing. So we assume Cortana would stay for some time there.
Cortana was launched in Nov 2015 for iOS and Android. Using its natural language processing capabilities, it could recognize the natural voice and set reminders (they will stay in Microsoft To Do app), answer questions, and show results from the Bing search.
Nothing is surprising as the company is giving up the race of virtual assistants with Siri, Google Assistant, and Alexa. Since Satya Nadella took charge in 2014, Microsoft is quick in making decisions when it is the right time to quit. Nadella made the bold choice to stop Windows Phone in which iOS and Android were leading and discontinued Microsoft Lumia in 2017.
Moreover, Nadella made the Windows ecosystem unnecessary to use Microsoft products. Besides Cortana, the company brought its flagship development tool Visual Studio to Mac in 2016. It started to produce the Office software for iPad and Android in 2014, so people use their productivity suite on other’s hardware.
One more time, Microsoft has other ideas for Cortana instead of just keeping it there to compete with digital assistants of Amazon, Google, and Apple.
Cortana will not be there to set reminders or create lists for you, but Microsoft will integrate it into Microsoft 365 productivity apps. Cortana will be the part of the Outlook app as “Play My Emails” a text-to-speech feature that can read the emails aloud.
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