A major update for Cortana has been announced, replacing consumer features with business features. This will include features for email, calendaring and productivity.
The new version of Cortana will become available on Windows 10 this spring. The voice assistant is now integrated in the Windows 10 taskbar. However, the new version will be a stand-alone app, which includes a chat interface for typing questions. Users will also simply be able to communicate with Cortana via voice commands, as was previously the case.
One of the most important new features in the update is an integrated calendar, with which the new Cortana will provide information about upcoming meetings and set up the whole thing. The assistant will also have the ability to retrieve emails from a user’s inbox, send new messages, find contacts, retrieve files and take notes in the Microsoft To Do app.
Microsoft has not indicated whether Cortana will only work with its own services after the update or also support other productivity solutions such as G Suite. However, it is known that you will need to log in with a Microsoft work or school account. The new features will be rolled out in place of the current, consumer-oriented capabilities. These functions will be phased out as part of the transformation.
“Some consumer features, including music, connected home and third party skills will no longer be available in the updated Cortana experience in Windows 10,” said Andrew Shuman, Cortana Corporate Vice President at Microsoft. “We will also shut down Cortana services in the Microsoft Launcher on Android by the end of April.”