Microsoft Cortana Coming soon to iOS and Android

Windows 10 Reaches Out to Integrate with the Major Mobile OS’

Phone Companion App
Image © Microsoft.

May 29, 2015

Microsoft has great plans with its upcoming Windows 10 OS. One of its main aims is to integrate itself with all the other major OS’ today. In perfect accordance with this plan, the giant recently announced that it would create a Cortana app for iOS and Android. The company further announced that a Cortana app for Android will ship in June this year and for iOS, sometime later this year.

How Cortana Will Work for iOS and Android

Windows 10 will be coming with an app called the Phone Companion app. This will enable the OS to work on other smartphones. Once an iOS or Android device is plugged into a Windows 10 device, the Phone Companion app will install Microsoft’s entire suite of apps onto the device. Cortana, Music, Office, OneNote, OneDrive, Outlook and Skype will all be installed onto the device.

With this move, Microsoft aims to offer seamless syncing over a variety of devices, so that all types of files can be made available and are usable across multiple devices. Right now, Cortana, the company’s own digital assistant, will be made available on the other platforms. While the app will be similar to the current one on Windows and Windows Phone, it will not be the same. The app will work more or less the same way on iOS and Android.

However, it will not be able to launch apps, manipulate system settings or be available in hands-free, “Hey Cortana” trigger mode. The Edge browser, which integrates with Cortana, will also not be available for other platforms.

This is yet another major step forward for Microsoft and it reiterates the current CEO, Satya Nadella’s philosophy, of focusing on mobility as a whole, instead of viewing devices and OS’ as separate entities.

This move will also help app developers. The Universal Windows Platform will make it much easier for developers to create apps that cover a vast spectrum of mobile devices and OS’.

Will Cortana for iOS and Android Really Help?

Looking at the flip side of this, however, one has to wonder if iOS and Android users would really care to use Cortana on their smartphones and tablets. iOS users already have Siri and Android users, Google Now. These digital assistants are already par excellence and users swear by them. Being native to their respective platforms, they offer deeper integration, richer features and more powerful functionality, not to mention ease of access. Hence, they will naturally be the preferred app for users.

However, the other apps, belonging to Microsoft’s suite, such as Outlook, OneNote and so on, may prove to be very useful to other device users.