Cortana – a digital personal assistant from computer technology giant Windows – has finally been made available to iOS and Android smartphone users in the UK.
This extends the functionality of Cortana on Windows 10 to whatever smartphone the user carries, making it ideal for those who own a Windows laptop or desktop computer and want to use their mobile device in tandem with it.
Cortana could be seen as either a rival or complement to the likes of Siri, Apple's digital assistant. The Windows variant offers the ability to ensure the smartphone is always in perfect sync with the main computer, helping users to stay on top of things.
These include the ability to set reminders that travel with the user, helping to keep track of things that need to be remembered across all platforms in use.
It is also optimised for mobile, with quick action buttons and voice control making it possible for the user to access what they need quickly. This is complemented by a streamlined design with widgets for Android and iOS.
Cortana can also be used to quickly look up information on the fly, by simply asking a question starting with: “Hey, Cortana.”
In a blog announcing the release of Cortana for the new platforms, Cortana senior product marketing manager Laura Jones said that it was the company's goal to make the digital personal assistant available to as many people as possible.
“We believe that everyone deserves a personal assistant – and a great personal assistant should be available to help on-the-go, on whatever device you carry,” she commented.
“We're excited to bring Cortana, your truly personal digital assistant, to Android and iOS in the UK, and a fresh new look for the apps.”