Microsoft still isn't giving a timeline as to when its virtual assistant, Cortana, will support integration with Amazon Alexa - something the companies had announced a year ago. It is available through 558AM, DAB and digital platforms such as on the web, Apple App Store and Google Play, and now Amazon Alexa and Google Assistant. Well, it seems as though the companies have finally figured out everything. Fast forward to the opening keynote of Microsoft's Build 2018 developer conference moments ago, both companies were on stage to show off the progress of their on-going work. First, the firm showed off accessing Cortana through an Amazon Echo. The response that came was "Cortana here, how can I help". After that, a user can follow-up questions and commands such as "send an email", something which you wouldn't be able to do while using Alexa alone.
The integration is still in private beta, Microsoft said Monday, and does not have a public launch date.
The other person, in the demo, said he was in his office. Alexa and Google Assistant power 92% of smart speakers.
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When Alexa was asked "What do you think of Cortana?" on a Windows 10 PC, the AI assistant responded "I like Cortana". He then asked Alexa to get him a ride to Harvest Vine.
Taylor used Alexa to order an Uber using the third-party Uber skill and told her to turn off the lights. Here, for example, he used Alexa to book a ride which Cortana can not do. But these conversations are the first of many between the two digital assistants. On Windows 10 PCs, Alexa shows up in the same interface as Cortana does. For example, Alexa customers would be able to access Cortana's productivity features, like booking meetings, accessing work calendars, or reading work emails.
The important thing to note here is that this wasn't just a simple integration.