Determined to become as big a player as Apple and Samsung in the Smartphone market, Microsoft has announced it is bringing an intelligent personal assistant on its Windows Phone 8.1 OS.
Named "Cortana" after a character of the Halo video game series, it is being taken as Microsoft's answer to Apple's Siri and Android's Google Now.
Most of what it offers is the same as the aforementioned trio does, which means Cortana will be capable of making calls, sending messages, taking notes, etc. But, it will also be open to working with third party software, a concept currently absent in its established rivals.
For the time being, only a select group of developers has been granted access to Cortana, but that pool is expected to grow in future.
The question remains though whether it'd be able to resolve the accent issues that stopped Siri and Google Now from becoming the primary choice of search and command on smartphones.
Neither Siri nor Google Now has so far been able to do much about the voice recognition problem, but judging from the demonstration of Cortana given by Windows Phone manager Joe Belfiore at Build 2014, it seems Microsoft has got the right thing in their first attempt. But then most tech things work well at exhibitions and demo events and its gremlins start to unravel only when they're out there for real testing.
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