Cortana Will Help Windows 10 Users Keep Their Promises
Microsoft's upgraded virtual assistant will soon remind users to honor the commitments they make via email.Windows 10 users will soon have a new ally in helping to preserve professional and personal relationships. In an upcoming update for Windows 10, which is currently rolling out to members of the Windows Insider early-access program, Microsoft is upgrading its virtual assistant technology, Cortana. It will soon gain the ability to keep track of a user's obligations and suggest reminders, announced Marcus Ash, group program manager for the Microsoft Cortana group, today. Debuting in Windows Phone 8.1, Cortana is Microsoft's answer to voice-activated digital assistants like Apple Siri and Google Now. Powered by Microsoft's cloud and the Bing search engine, the technology has since been ported to the company's flagship operating system, Windows 10. By uttering "Hey, Cortana," users can search the Web, set reminders, get directions and call up weather forecasts, among several other activities. "People often make promises to do things in email but may forget about them as the days go by and emails pile up," Ash wrote in a company blog post. "Microsoft Research (MSR) was pursuing an intriguing and powerful idea around this challenge—automatically recognizing when people make commitments to one another in email messages and providing reminders."
The feature builds on the company's work on using Cortana to surface information, such as flight and package tracking, that can get buried in overflowing email inboxes. "We collaborated very closely with MSR to bring this new ability to Cortana to help people better keep track of their commitments," Ash wrote