Technology

Microsoft To Discontinue Cortana For Windows By Year’s End: What We Know

Microsoft’s virtual assistant, Cortana, will be discontinued as a Windows standalone app in late 2023—the Redmond-based tech giant has announced.

Named after the artificial intelligence-powered assistant in Microsoft’s Halo video game franchise, Cortana was revealed in 2014, almost a decade ago.

However, Cortana will continue to be available in Outlook mobile, Teams mobile, Microsoft Teams display, and Microsoft Teams rooms, as this change only affects Cortana in Windows.

“Instead of clicking the Cortana icon and launching the app to begin using voice, now you can use voice and satisfy your productivity needs through different tools,” the company said.

Notably, the company also discontinued the Cortana app for both Android and iOS in 2020 and phased out Cortana from the Windows taskbar when Windows 11 launched.

It isn’t clear why Microsoft is gradually phasing out Cortana and exactly when it will be discontinued in the latter part of the year, but this development coincides with the growing dependence on generative AI. Like Google, Microsoft is doubling down on AI-powered work tools—including Bing chatbot, based on OpenAI’s GPT-4, and Microsoft 365 Copilot.

Thanks to the growing list of AI-powered products—stemming from the tech giant’s investment worth billions of dollars in OpenAI—it is becoming clearer that, moving forward, the company may remove several other legacy support apps in the future.

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