How to set a location-based reminder with Cortana

One of our favorite features on the Windows Phone 8.1 Preview for Developers is setting up location-based reminders with Cortana. You can tell your Windows Phone device to remind you certain things when you leave or arrive at certain locations. Head past the break to watch our how-to video.

To get started, bring up Cortana by holding the search button for a few seconds. Tell Cortana to remind you something when arriving or leaving certain places. Here are some examples:

  • Remind me to walk the dogs when I get home.
  • Remind me to buy a tripod when I leave the house.
  • Remind me to buy milk and bread when I get to Fairways Market.
  • Remind me to get cash when I’m near any Chase Bank.

Cortana will figure out where you work and live over time, but you can manually add favorites and nicknames in Cortana’s Notebook. It’s the button on the top right corner when you’re using Cortana. Click ‘places’ to edit or add your favorite places with nicknames that you want to use.

If the location isn’t immediately recognized from your favorite places, Cortana performs a search for it. In one of the examples above, Cortana searches for a Fairways Market and asks you which one you want. Select the right place and confirm to set the reminder.

Another great feature is that you can select “any place” for reminders. In one of the examples above, I’ve asked Cortana to remind me to get cash when I’m near any Chase Bank. She lists nearby banks, but you can choose “any Chase bank” from the list.

These location-based reminders perform surprisingly well. We have noticed immediate notification of reminders when arriving at home, but it took a few minutes sitting in the Chase Bank parking lot before the reminder came up.

Have you tried setting location-based reminders with Cortana on Windows Phone 8.1? Has she been successful? Let us know in the comments!

Mark Guim

Mark Guim is Video Editor at Windows Central. He switched to Windows because the MacBook Pro isn't Pro enough. You can follow him on Twitter at @markguim.