Microsoft has announced that its digital assistant, Cortana, will only support Microsoft Edge now. The company also said that all search queries will yield results using Microsoft-owned Bing on Windows 10.
Notifications have been sent to users and they don’t need to update anything, as the servers at Microsoft have been tweaked accordingly — setting the aforementioned browser and search engine as default for Cortana.
The news may have disappointed many, but Microsoft explained how this will only improve user experience in the long run. Undoubtedly, Cortana is one of the most competitive digital assistants, with its availability across multiple platforms other than Windows, such as Android and iOS. However, it was originally designed to work with Bing and Microsoft Edge only. The company explained that users will miss out on some of the key features if their Cortana is powered by other search engines or uses other browsers.
The GM of Search and Cortana, Ryan Gavin, explained the effectiveness of the digital assistant, and how it enhances users productivity:
- Typing “Pizza Hut” or any other major food chain’s name in the Cortana search bar can load up its main page on Microsoft Edge and can even suggest the closest location to users.
- Quick Solutions on Microsoft Edge for common issues can be suggested right away, with simple query on the Cortana search box. Just type “Bluetooth Not Working” and you will see a video on the browser that can help resolve the issue.
- Shopping gets easier through Bing; just search for any type of apparel through Image search and right click on it, click on Ask Cortana and get more information about it
- Coupons from retail giants such as Best Buy and other companies come up in the suggestion box after a search query as “best buy” is entered in the Cortana search box.
Clearly, as we mentioned earlier, Cortana can make your life easier to a great extent. And the examples above further support our claim. It works and shows results using Edge and Bing only. This would not have been possible if we use software from a third party for it.
Mr. Gavin also added that Cortana will become smarter with time. Given the executive’s explanation, we can hope for the digital assistant to directly get us tickets or bring up the latest news with commands as simple as “updates on US election”
Undoubtedly, Microsoft has been continuously improving Windows 10 and its features. Many may regard the recent move as a selfish act on the company’s part, but such initiatives will improve user experience for sure.
It looks like future propositions for Cortana will use machine-learning where it can get us concert tickets without any trouble. Machine-learning requires continuous monitoring and feedback to the servers — in other words a lot of networking. What could be better networked together than the company’s own products? It will only result in better response and a much improved user experience. Similar to Google’s services, it assesses our search queries on the engine and provides relevant feedback on other apps.
Microsoft has so far fulfilled its promise to keep improving Windows 10. It constantly takes user feedback into consideration, and introduces changes and improvements in every update that is rolled out.