In August we first heard that a desktop version of Cortana was being developed to be a major feature of the next version of Windows. Back then we thought the next version of Windows would be called Windows 9 – but at least we were right about the Cortana inclusion, so it seems.
WinBeta exclusively reported, late last week, that early versions of the Cortana app are up and running in Windows 10. The Windows-focussed news organ also published a video of Cortana working, and gave her a work-out by testing out her known features. While quite a lot of the Cortana features you may know from your Windows smartphone do work many are limited because of the lack of an online database connection for PC software users at this time.
WinBeta stressed in the video that what you see is "an in-development version of Cortana running on pre-release software". The rather basic looking UI is also definitely not the final version, we are told, and what you see is an interface currently "designed for testers" only. Furthermore, in the consumer release version, users might be able to activate Cortana by voice rather than having to press a button.
The following assistant functions were seen, demonstrated or talked about in the video:
- Skype calling
- Add and check calendar
- Take notes
- Play and pause music
- Maps and directions
Finally, when Cortana is properly wired up by Microsoft she should be able to indulge in AI chit-chat, money conversions and further online dependent features, says WinBeta.
A Cortana on PC concept design
While in the above video demonstration Cortana is voiced by the Halo video game voice artist Jen Taylor, it is thought that her voice/language will vary depending upon your region in the world – just like on Windows Phone.