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Microsoft is finally killing Cortana as AI is in the driver's seat

Even though Cortana will leave Windows 10 and Windows 11 soon, it will still be available to use across other products, such as Outlook, Teams mobile.

Edited By: Shubham Verma

Published: Aug 04, 2023, 10:42 AM IST

Cortana is finally saying its last goodbye.
Cortana is finally saying its last goodbye.

Story Highlights

  • Microsoft Store's latest update will show that Cortana app is deprecated.
  • This update is only available to Windows Insider users in Dev and Canary channels.
  • Cortana may still be available in other Microsoft products, such as Outlook.

Microsoft has been in the process of winding up its digital voice assistant, Cortana, for some time now. In June, the company said it will discontinue supporting Cortana on Windows 10 and Windows 11, but without mentioning the exact timeline. Microsoft later hinted at August to be Cortana’s final days but even then it did not specify a date. However, it seems the official process to kill Cortana has begun.

Folks at XDA Developers spotted the change in the latest update in Microsoft Store, currently visible only to Insiders in the Dev and Canary channels. That means the update will roll out to all users gradually, giving some users some time to spend the last few days with Cortana. Once the update is widespread, you will see the following message when opening the Cortana app: “Cortana in Windows as a standalone app is deprecated.”

It will be accompanied by a Learn More button, clicking on which will take you to Microsoft’s support page where all the information about the death of Cortana and its possible replacement will be available. It will also educate the user on how the deprecation of Cortana will impact them.

Even though Cortana will leave Windows 10 and Windows 11 in the coming days, it will still be available to use across other products, such as Outlook, Teams mobile, Microsoft Teams display, and Microsoft Teams Rooms — at least until Microsoft decides to kill Cortana for good.

Cortana arrived at a time when digital voice assistants were becoming popular, allowing users to get things done with just their voice. Cortana never got the stardom as much as Amazon’s Alexa, Google Assistant, or Apple’s Siri, but it was not unknown. Cortana for Windows users was helpful, but over time, Microsoft shifted its focus to tools that could encompass more functionalities.

Earlier this year, Microsoft announced Copilot, an AI-based assistant that will be in the driver’s seat on Windows 11, letting users not only do basic things like playing music or opening an app but also ask the assistant complex questions as you would ask Bing AI. Copilot is expected to come out with Windows 11, version 23H2 sometime in September. The deprecation of Cortana, thus, seems strategic because, by the time its yesteryear assistant will leave, Copilot will take control. While it is not clear whether Cortana will be a part of the next major Windows 11 update, it seems very unlikely considering Insider users are already seeing Cortana leaving.

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Author Name | Shubham Verma

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