Digital assistants are on the rise, and now they’re going from being in devices to being in apps. Companies like Google and Apple have already integrated Assistant and Siri into our conversations. Now it’s Cortana’s turn. The digital assistant from Microsoft just arrived on Skype. Microsoft believes in-context assistance will help maintain a better flow in conversations by serving useful information based on what people are saying.
Skype’s integration is nearly identical to Google Assistant on Allo and Siri on iMessage. Cortana will appear at the bottom of a conversation and offer automated responses or quick access to information.
The integration makes it so that you never have to leave Skype. When someone asks if you’d like to join them for lunch tomorrow, Cortana will offer to add a reminder. That reminder is then synced across all your devices. Going somewhere? Cortana can deliver directions to a specific destination. Search results, too, are displayed within conversations on Skype. Microsoft’s digital assistant is constantly analyzing (but not collecting and storing) what’s said to serve valuable suggestions.
There’s also the ability to have a direct conversation with Cortana. It’s essentially the same as having the Cortana app on your phone, but conversing with the digital assistant on Skype could feel more comfortable because you’re typing rather than talking. You just type away to Cortana like you normally do to friends.
Cortana on Skype is currently rolling out for iOS and Android devices, but you’ll need to be in the United States to use it. Microsoft plans on slowly expanding the feature’s availability in the coming months.