Microsoft just released Cortana into the world earlier this week, but the company’s answer to Siri and Google Now is already making the jump from mobile to desktop. Starting today, personalized information cards like those that are served up by Cortana on Windows Phone 8.1 will appear on Bing’s homepage as a scroll of news, weather, flights and stock updates along the bottom of the screen.
You’ll need to log into your Microsoft account on your desktop computer to set up the personalized cards in Bing. From there, click on interests to pick and choose from a pre-selected list of topics tailored to what you care about. As long as you’re logged in, Microsoft says you’ll see the same notifications across all of its Bing-powered services, including Cortana and the Bing Sports app. There’s no word on whether the new feature will extend to the Xbox One, though hopefully that’s in the cards for a future update.
It makes a lot of sense to spread the personalized notifications offered by Cortana across Microsoft’s entire ecosystem. The new feature could encourage a Windows Phone user to do their web searching with Bing instead of Google search, for example, which would help Microsoft keep customers inside its ecosystem. Google’s moving down a similar path thanks to a recent update that brings Google Now information cards to its Chrome browser, but Microsoft may have the edge here thanks to the wide range of Bing-powered services it already offers.