Who actually uses Cortana
Microsoft is hiring Cortana ... with the exception of Windows 10 and Microsoft 365
Cortana started as a digital voice assistant in 2014 on Windows Phone 8.1. At the time, it was supposed to compete with Apple's Siri. In fact, Cortana was way ahead of the competition because it combined top-notch speech recognition with many features. But with the demise of Windows Phone and the failure of the smart home market, Cortana continued to fall. Bizarrely, as Alexa and Siri evolved, Cortana evolved backwards.
Microsoft has now completely changed the concept of Cortana. Away from a language assistant for everyone, towards a business product. Cortana should help in the future to plan meetings and possibly record them. A Windows 10 app is apparently sufficient for this benefit, which is why all the others are now set.
Setting the functionality: these are the dates
Cortana won't stop working overnight. Instead, individual platforms are switched off step by step, for which a schedule has already been set.
You want to start on September 7, 2020 with the Cortana Skills, which you could download in the US. These skills enabled Cortana to acquire new skills, such as controlling Philips Hue pears.
In the next step, Microsoft will discontinue the Cortana app on Android and iOS. A specific date is not available, so far it will be communicated in spring 2021. The integration in all Microsoft Teams apps serves as a replacement.
From 2021, Cortana will only be accessible on Surface headphones via detours, e.g. via Outlook. So she will still be able to read you e-mails.
Ultimately, it hits the Harman Kardon Invoke, also known as the Cortana loudspeaker. This will lose its functionality in January 2021.
A small compensation for hardware owners
Of course, it hits owners of a Cortana speaker particularly hard, as they have spent money on a product that will soon no longer work. For this reason the device will receive a firmware update. This is to transform the Cortana speaker into a simple Bluetooth speaker. The update will be downloaded automatically within 6 months of its release; Cortana disappears completely from the time it is installed.
Microsoft emphasizes in the support entry that consumers would primarily only use the loudspeaker for music anyway. This would even be understandable, since the loudspeaker offers a very good sound.
In addition, Microsoft will give every Invoke owner with a US account a Microsoft prepaid card worth $ 50 as compensation. You can then use it to buy new Microsoft products. To be eligible for compensation, an Invoke speaker must be installed and used by July 31st.
Owners of the first generation of Surface Headphones are also entitled to compensation. They receive a $ 25 prepaid card. You can find more information here.
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