As it happens with many of the Microsoft Windows builds, Cortana for Android leaked out a bit too early and its much like the one you get to see on a Windows Phone. Defending the leak, Microsoft said that the program is currently in beta and the firm is planning to release a final version of it this month.
The leaked version of the beta actually came from a unknown member of Microsoft’s Windows Insider program. Here’s what Microsoft said-
In the spirit of the Windows Insider Program, we’re testing the Cortana for Android beta with a limited number of users in the U.S. and China before releasing the beta publicly in the next few weeks.
Cortana is native digital assistant for Windows 10 platform, but Microsoft said it would be generous to offer it to other platforms as well. Microsoft confirmed earlier this year that its smart assistant, Cortana, would soon arrive for Android devices.
Based on what we’ve seen so far, Cortana for Android isn’t much different than its Windows Phone 8 and Windows 10 counterparts.
The entire interface looks like a miniature version of Cortana for Windows 10, with a dark theme mixed with the white area for content. You can ask Cortana to fetch weather data, text someone in your contacts, or set reminders. You can also access Cortana’s notebook that she keeps on you. I tried setting up an alarm for next 20 minutes and it indeed worked flawlessly and, yes, it did wake me up after 20 minutes.
Location based features seems to be working fine. Asking her for restaurants and stores nearby or perhaps a map was not at all a hectic task. Moreover, it gathers your location to curate your news headlines and is almost accurate.
Notably, Cortana on Android is not always listening, so you can’t say “Hey Cortana” to wake her up. Also, some features like asking Cortana to send messages to contacts appear to be a little unfinished and would evolve with the final release of the app.
Beyond the cross-platform availability, we also hear a little about what Microsoft’s doing to enhance Cortana’s performance, by way of an AI project known internally as Einstein.
Overall, we haven’t noticed any such major bug despite of the app being in beta version. Microsoft will roll out the official version of the application in a month and would be available on Playstore for download.