Cortana Beta app now works for Fast ring Windows Insiders

Cortana in Halo
Cortana in Halo (Image credit: Microsoft)

What you need to know

  • A new Cortana Beta (opens in new tab) app recently appeared on the Microsoft Store.
  • The move to the Microsoft Store should break Cortana's dependence on new Windows 10 updates.
  • In order to compete with Alexa, it needs frequent updates.
  • The new beta experience was first spotted hidden in the 20H1 Insider build.

It's no secret that Cortana, the digital assistant, needs to be revamped. Luckily, Microsoft is working on making the experience better. A few weeks ago, we noticed that a "Cortana Beta" app was available on the Microsoft Store. While you could easily download it, this new version of Cortana didn't work. It was unclear when Windows 10 Insiders would be able to test out the new features.

Luckily, that changed today. According to a report by Aggiornamenti Lumia, "Cortana Beta is now active and working for Insider users registered in the fast channel (not Skip Ahead)." Many users on social media are also reporting the same.

If you happen to be in the Fast ring, be sure to check out the Cortana Beta on the Microsoft Store. You can download it by following the link here (opens in new tab). This will take you to the Microsoft Store where you should be able to download it for free.

Cheap PC accessories we love

Take a gander at these awesome PC accessories, all of which will enhance your Windows experience.

Anker 4 port USB 3.0 hub (opens in new tab) ($10 at Amazon)

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Ikea Fixa Cable Management System (opens in new tab) ($11 at Amazon)

This IKEA cable management kit is your ticket to a clean setup. It's simple and functional.

NZXT Puck (opens in new tab) ($20 at Amazon)

This clever little accessory has powerful magnets on the rear to make it stick to any of the metal panels on your PC case or anything else. It's great for hanging accessories like headsets.

Asher Madan handles gaming news for Windows Central. Before joining Windows Central in 2017, Asher worked for a number of different gaming outlets. He has a background in medical science and is passionate about all forms of entertainment, cooking, and antiquing.

6 Comments
  • When can we access advanced Cortana skills in European languages such as French or Spanish ?
  • I'm glad to see Cortana improving, but I'm frustrated that last week Cortana on the Invoke speaker stopped working with iHeartRadio. I hope this is just a glitch and gets working again soon.
  • Cortana stopped working with Groove (MS's own music app) long ago. What a stupid idea.
  • Well, Groove itself stopped working agruablly.
  • About ******* time
    I asked her to remind me to do Laundry every week on Thursday.
    She instead set the reminder for every 18th of the month.
    This isn't the first instance of stupid things like this
  • That could still work, it just depends on how much clothes you have or how smelly you are willing to be. 😜