Microsoft's Cortana is set to get some new and interesting features Microsoft

At the Microsoft Build 2016, the company made several major announcements including new features for its voice-based virtual assistant Cortana which will be available in the Windows 10 Anniversary Update. Among the major features the most striking one is the incorporation with Outlook.

Here is a quick look at what Cortana can do after the update:

  • Integration with Microsoft Outlook
  • To take context of your emails and things you commit to and will automatically create events that correspond with such events
  • To send an email to a contact with attachments
  • To lock and unlock screen, giving you quicker access to your personal assistant for common tasks across all types of devices without unlocking your PC
  • Show text messages from an Android phone on your Windows 10 desktop
  • Move your calendar events around in order to accommodate your new event
  • Ability to interact with software "bots" that can have limited conversations with users and help with tasks like booking a hotel room, ordering a meal or arranging a delivery
  • To proactively make suggestions throughout the day, like arrange transportation
  • There will also be new application program interface (APIs) for developers to create integrations for third-party apps

Microsoft's Cortana launched a couple of years back has evolved to take on the likes of Apple's Siri and Google's Now. Integrating Cortana with other companies' bots could increase the use of Microsoft's services, and make them more valuable.

It is hoped that this experiment with Cortana goes better than the latest episode with "Tay" who was taught some offensive statements by Twitter users that ultimately led to shutting it down. The Windows 10 anniversary update will be available in the next few months, but Microsoft has yet to specify a date for it.

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