Meet Cortana: The New Voice Assistant in Windows 10

by September 28, 2015 0 comments

Microsoft Cortana is an intelligent personal assistant created by Microsoft for Windows Phone 8.1, Microsoft Band etc. The digital assistant that rivals with Siri and Google Now has now landed on to Windows 10 PCs and tablets.
In Windows 10, Cortana is integrated with the operating system’s in-built search function. At first Cortana will want to access your personal info, then use that info along with her Bing search engine to intelligently pop information you’re looking for and help you execute other tasks.
Cortana can help you look and find all sorts of online information you ask via text or voice commands. It can also use those commands to search your hard drive, OneDrive, and other files that meet certain filters, like “Find me pictures from June.”
Getting Started
Cortana is pinned next to the Start button on the desktop and can be invoked by saying “Hey Cortana”. Next type in your name or a nickname and click ‘Use that’. You’ll then see Cortana’s default view, which displays the top news stories to begin with.

hey cortana

For Cortana to be truly useful and personal, she needs to know more about you. Click the three horizontal lines at the top-left corner of the Cortana window to access the menu wherein you can see the menu descriptions in the left-most image below. It will take a few minutes to set up but this is the time well spent as the more you customize it according to your interests, the better results it can give.

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By default, Cortana gains access to view your calendar and location that will let her remind you of meetings, let you know what the weather is, and provide you with traffic alerts. She’ll also provide you a list of news categories to choose from. If you select a category to be active, you’ll be provided three headlines from those categories whenever you check in.

cortana 3

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It can also locate events, places of interest, and spots to eat and drink.

cortana 5

Sports fans can fill her with their favorite teams and she will provide you with schedule information, current scores, and even results from the last contest.

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Final Thoughts
Digital assistants aren’t new on smart phones. On PC’s though, this is a new playground. Cortana’s core strength lies in the ways users can customize her knowledge. With a little time and effort, you can get a lot out of your digital assistant. Her introduction in Windows 10 paves the way to a whole new set of users. It’ll be really interesting to see how Microsoft and end users leverage the features available in their new digital assistant.

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