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Alexa and Cortana Are Now Best Friends

Have you ever wanted to access your Microsoft outlook email or calendar through your Amazon echo device? Would you also like to be able to use Amazon’s Alexa on your Windows 10 desktop computer? Well, now you can.

In August 2017, Microsoft and Amazon announced a partnership that would bring their respective smart assistance together. This partnership between Alexa and Cortana has been in testing for the past year and is now available to the public. Amazon had previously integrated Alexa into Windows 10 laptop computers through partnerships with companies like Acer. Now, you have access to most of Alexa’s features on any Windows 10 computer. Simply ask Cortana to “open Alexa” or visit the Microsoft App Store to install it. Once you’ve signed in with your Amazon credentials, you will have access to all of Alexa’s features except communications. This includes Drop in, announcements and phone calls.

Microsoft’s Cortana works in a very similar way on the Amazon Echo.

You can either search for the Cortana skill using the Amazon Alexa app or just ask Alexa to enable Cortana. Then, you will need to sign into your Microsoft account using the Amazon Alexa app.

Once you have enabled and signed into your Microsoft account, Cortana can be used on your Amazon Echo the same as it is on your Windows 10 computer.

Here are some specific things Cortana can do for you:

  • Manage your calendar and keep you up to date
  • Send email with your voice or check for any new emails
  • Create and manage your lists
  • Have a chat
  • Find facts and answer your questions
  • Using one smart assistant to access another may seem counterintuitive at first however, there are some advantages. Cortana may not be as robust as Alexa But it’s ability to access emails works better than most other skills. In addition to everything else it can do, Alexas integration with smart home technology makes it a great fit for your home computer.
  • Intended or not, this new friendship between Alexa and Cortana just furthers the accessibility of mainstream products.

What do you think about this new partnership between Microsoft Cortana and Amazons Alexa? Please let us know in the comments below or send an email to: feedback@ami.ca

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