What you need to know

  • A new Cortana Beta 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.

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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. 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 ($10 at Amazon)

Whether on a desktop or laptop PC, you always need more ports to connect things to. This hub gives you an additional four USB 3.0 Type A ports.

Ikea Fixa Cable Management System ($11 at Amazon)

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

NZXT Puck ($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.

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