Here's what Microsoft's Cortana looks like for Windows Phone 8.1

Microsoft is set to release Windows Phone 8.1 later this year, which will include Cortana  a personal assistant that will rival the likes of Siri and Google Now. The Verge has today published some screenshots, showing how Cortana will look on Windows Phone, replacing the built-in Bing search feature. There's some bad news for those who were expecting to see the animated character from the Halo universe.

As one can see from the screenshots below, a circular icon will be present, which will animate when calculating or speaking to the Windows Phone owner. Not quite the Halo experience some were praying for, but keeping in line with the simplicity of Windows Phone, it's all about the functionality when it comes to virtual asistants.

Cortana Settings

Much like Siri on iOS, Cortana is able to address users by name or nicknames like "Master Chief" from Halo. The assistant will also be able to store information in a notebook system, allowing for quick access to location data, behaviours, personal details, reminders and contact information. Notifications can also be generated through flight tracking and other mentions in email conversations.

In short: Cortana will be more than a mere command and search assistant. Bing will join Foursquare and other services as sources of information, and Cortana will learn and adapt to individuals, offering a more personalised experience. We expect to see more about Cortana in the run up to Build 2014, where Windows Phone 8.1 is likely to be announced.

Source: The Verge; thanks to everyone who tipped us!

Rich Edmonds
Senior Editor, PC Build

Rich Edmonds was formerly a Senior Editor of PC hardware at Windows Central, covering everything related to PC components and NAS. He's been involved in technology for more than a decade and knows a thing or two about the magic inside a PC chassis. You can follow him on Twitter at @RichEdmonds.

  • Dang, minimalistic And to the point. Like it
  • No doubt I like it better that way too :), also can't wait to tell her to call me Chief :P
  • I wish it looked like viki from iRobot movie.
  • Ugh, i love viki, but this design goes better with modern UI (i might go watch iRobot again)
  • I don't care for it. I'd rather they let us use our Xbox avatars. We can customize the hell out of those.
  • I am now a little less interested. Having "The OPTION" of avatars would have been great.
  • No way! My Xbox avie looks like a vampire with Down's. I want Captain Vane from Black Sails so I can make "I want you bad" come out of his mouth 20 times a day woooo! When's the development kit coming out?!
  • I was hoping for an animated paperclip.
  • We all were.
  • Yes yes, but can it read?!
  • LMaO! Clippy
  • Just ask cortana "Do u like Clippy" :D She will change to animated paperclip :D 
  • Aside from Clippy, there was also the cute puppy Rover, as well as Merlin.
  • 'A vampire with Down's'? What does that mean? If, as I suspect, the contributor is being offensive about a learning disability then they should be banned... unless the moderators agree with the post? For the record, I have a daughter with Down syndrome. She is brilliant.
  • He obviously didn't mean anything about your daughter and it's up to you to take offence without it being directed toward you or your daughter, i imagine she is brilliant, my brother in-law has down syndrome and he is also brilliant :D (albeit, not a vampire)
  • Thank you for speaking with a level head. I don't think the OP meant anything offensive or personal by it. He could have easily said a vampire in a wheelchair, one arm, blind or deaf  and it wouldn't have been offensive to people with those ailments either. I do not think he should be banned for that.
  • 'Looks like a vampire with Down's'. So, Paul, what is the Down's look? I look forward to your answer. You say 'level', I say offensive.
  • Although some of the physical characteristics of Down syndrome may be seen in people without the condition, a combination of certain physical traits is often a fairly easily recognizable indication to parents and physicians that a child has the condition. Although not every child with Down syndrome will carry noticeable physical characteristics, in approximately 80% of all cases, a recognizable combination of these physical traits will be present in the child or adult with Down syndrome. Some of the most common characteristics of people with Down syndrome include:
     · A flattened appearance to the face
     · A high, broad forehead
     · A smaller head, proportionately
     · An upward slant to the eyes
     · A narrow slit to the eyes
     · Pronounced bags or folds under the eyes
     · A small, depressed nose
     · Small ears
     · Ears set quite low to the face
     · A small mouth
     · A large or protruding tongue
     · A short neck
     · Short arms and legs
     · Short fingers and toes
     · Large space between the first and second toe
     · A single, deep crease in the center of the palm
     · Poor muscle tone (hypotonia)
     · Loose joints (hyperflexability)
     · Weak reflexes but I'm sure you already knew this. My wife has worked with and cared for many people with this condition a lot of whom lead normal lives.
  • Is that what you do then? Swing ban hammers at anything you don't understand or humor that's not your personal cup of tea? How common. I don't know your daughter, but if you say she is brilliant I have little to lose by believing you. Considering I don't know you either the concept of me having purposely posted to offend is patently absurd bordering on nonsensical, so the rest of these posters who clearly have spent enough time in the real world to know how pointless it is to take offense at everything and who have their own senses of entitlement under control are right on with their diagnosis. You might want to take notes. As to my description of my avatar? It is a very poorly designed vampire. In fact, it matches the description I wrote very well - considering there are common facial traits among people with Down's that are universally acknowledged, if someone possesses some individual similarity in their features and is said to resemble someone with Down's, are you prepared to punish them as well? Accurate or no? Who appointed you judge? I may sound cross. I am not - more like resolute. I've said nothing wrong, nothing hostile and with that in mind I'm as disinclined to tiptoe past the demands of the dangerously self entitled as I am to apologize for stepping on their toes, so long as I can live with my harmless intent. And I can. If that's ban worthy then the mods can borrow my hammer if it suits them. And I am a she, not a he.
  • Now, that's a really good idea!!!.. But, besides our XBA they should have a hub where we can build our own Cortana, one original to the device.. That would be Awesome!
  • I dunno if anyone is familiar with things like Megaman Battlenetwork and the PET's. But, I always figured, you already have a full bodied, 3D avatar on xbox live... Why not just use that guy as an OPTION for your personal assistant. There are already animations and for some, a small attachment to those characters.
  • I loved those games! That's not a bad idea, maybe in Windows Phone 8.5 or whatever the next big update is we'll see that.
  • I'm not sure I want myself helping myself with the things I don't know. Though the option to use the same tools and anything else we've unlocked to create a second avatar specific to it, as people have suggested, i'm all for that. 
  • Haha, I guess so. I guess it's how you look at it. I've always taken that little avatar to be exactly as my example (the PET's from MMBN). And so, looks like me sure, but it isn't me. It's a tiny lil cpu.  I dunno, it makes a truckload of sense to me, haha. But options are the key. If it were an option, vs the new static ones, vs the defaul one.. maybe a little adhoc, but many would like it.
  • Agree!!!!!!❕❕❕❕❕❕❕❕❕❕❕❕❕❕❕
  • How much horsepower would be required to have avitar move to essentially reading you a text.  May look a bit doppie.  The software requirements to have the software categorize the information and then choose a animation would be significant, and probably annoying after you get tired of the same animation.  Plus, why would I be looking at my phone driving a car asking for search?  I did notice that my phone NOkia 928 worked flawlessly with a radio I installed.  Read my text, allowed me to repaly, add and then send.  The voice recognition worked great.  IS that functino a part of Bing and soon to be integrated with Cortana?  I also noticed that the Here Map system allows me to choose a voice.  Originally I had a british voice that said "turn right at 'west doctor' " instead of 'West Drive' ".  I assume the software reads Dr. as doctor instead of Drive.  
  • I played with the voice on Bing also and selected a British voice. It sounded cool until I tried to give it commands or look for contacts. It wouldn't always work until I started saying the names with a British accent. Then it worked great. I changed it back.
  • You need to be a more "yes we can!"" type of man.. Lol!❕
  • Xbox avatar would be awesome.
  • That's a tremendously FUN idea!
  • Cool looks great. I'm hoping that Cortana will be Microsoft's killer feature. Samsung and Apple are focusing on Health in 2014, trying to make Health and Wellness "The Next Big Thing" Microsoft has no horse in that race. They need to usurp the mobile dialogue with a game changer. Cortana can be it. What do you guys think. I started a forum on the topic right here on WPCentral.
  • Seriously? The Bing Health & Fitness app on my phone is a horse in the fight. So is HealthVault on Windows 8. Pretty awesome apps too.
  • basically windows phone trails android and iOS by 2 years.
  • In terms of douchebaggery?
  • +8.1 lol, classic reply
  • Sure. Show me equally great integration of social media. and anything close to the people hub. Show me the integration of maps, local data something even remotely close to livesight or maybe just anything clike what livetiles offer. Thought not.   Stuff like this is icing, it's glitter and nice to have.  
  • Same old boring do nothings splodge's on a tiny screen. Oh, wait now psychedelic colours.....nah, still boring...
  • Maybe they will give you an option where cortana does a strip and a table dance while calculating.
  • Im in! 
  • you mean like the hubs they are removing from wp? let's face it, the hubs were a great idea until they A) never opened them to the limited amount of services. sure, one place to get everything sounds great, but show me a single app that can tap into the hubs other than FB/Twitter? you can't because MSFT made it impossible to do this. B) failed to keep pace with the cadence of the services like FB and twitter forcing you to use the apps anyway. Integration of maps? let's just point out to you how annoying is to have the maps function of the OS be bastardized by the cheap immitation that is nokia maps which BTW doesn't work with the local scout...because it has to yank you out to yet another cheapo-app nokia drive. Integration? more like fragmentation. Why can't they just make ONE stinking maps app like google maps which does everything. quite simply, WP is a diasaster with location and social services. I'm not even sure if there is a strategy but after 3 years of using it, it only feels more like a feature phone OS...
  • Right. Windows Phone is behind by at least 1000 fart apps.
  • When did iOS introduced Bluetooth file transfer?
  • when did WP upgraded to use bluetooth 4?
  • By the way, which search engine does siri use?
  • based on the horrible accuracy, not google.
  • Bing It On. I've done it a hundred times and find Bing to be more accurate. Google is overrated. Also, they suck.
  • Android: initial release - 09/23/2008 iOS: initial release - 06/29/2007 Windows Phone: initial release - 10/21/2010   This is not trailing...This is on-time!
  • :D that is actually quite a clever observation. However I have to praise google. Not only have they basically dominated everybody, they are leading even as they have to deal with a mess of devices greater than even windows itself and they push updates so fast, it puts even apple to shame.
  • "they push updates so fast" yeah but how many legacy devices actually GET these updates from the carriers?
  • I love my Lumia 520, but I have to agree with the previous poster in saying Cortana is merely "catch-up" for Microsoft. Google Now and Siri are very capable, mature technologies in the extact same field... nothing new to see here... just glad we're getting it too :)
  • Siri is powered by Bing
  • seriously?
  • Yes. Apple is trying to pull away from Google.
  • That explains why it didn't work good in Germany. Bings lacks POIs. Posted via the WPC App for Android!
  • It also explains the disaster that is Apple Maps. If you ask me, it won't be too long before we see iSearch hit the web
  • Does anyone actually use Siri? I know lots of iPhone and iPad users, none of them have used Siri beyond trying it out. Maybe Cortana will be good enough to actually USE.
  • I have an iPad mini, and honestly... No, I never use Siri :) And even if Siri uses Bing (wouldn't doubt it), Cortana is still not a major differentiator in the market for Microsoft.
  • Everybody uses Siri, the first week after the buy an iPhone.
  • Well MS actually started this with TellMe back on WinMo. We've had Bing for a while on WP so this aught to be a pretty mature implementation.
  • that's like calling clippy mature just because it has been around forever. MSFT implementation is older? possibly. but remember you could never use tell-me to do anything useful. sure it would do some basic searches. I hardly call that an assistant. my pocket phone could do some of it prior to windows phone.
  • Actually, the built in voice command works just as good as Android or iOS in terms of function. You can voice call by number or name, open apps, voice text, have text read to you, and search the web. Granted, asking it what the weather is will not read it out to you, but far from WAAAY behind.
  • Yup. The basics are covered in WP8, the things that people I'd imagine use voice for the most. Except for voice-based GPS commands.
  • But it's not natural. What's cool with siri is beeing able to talk to him/her/it pretty normaly.
  • Nothing new? So if someone texts you from an Apple or Android field, will Siri or Google Now offer to fill in blanks from, lets say, someone asking to go to the local bar this Saturday at 9? Siri and Google Now will fill that into the calendars? Then Glance will pick that up and display it with the latest update? Just to go a little forward. ;) Sure, this may be a catch-up, but there's more to it than just a personal assistant, and this is one of the major features coming down the line that hasn't been fully leaked yet.
  • There's been nothing that I have heard that really curls my toes at this point. It really does just feel like MS is just trying to make sure they're not missing any features when compared to iOS/Android. I'm not making fun of anybody, just not going crazy waiting for this feature. The ability to close apps (GDR3... which my 521 doesn't have yet) and to separate my volume levels is more directly useful to me than Cortana "appears" to be.
  • Yeah but Cortana is just plain badass :P
  • I agree... MS can do a lot better, they already did it:
  • Nah. If they want to make money, especially with us Americans, have Cortana deliver pizza and 64 oz. sodas from a port.
  • And the great thing, someone had leaked the languages folder for cortana, and it included englsihs indian ! That means we wont have to wait for ages to get cortana here ! Though i really hope they record a better indian voice than the current one, its humiliating to open speech at present in front of people, the accent is so bad, almost as if they were promoting a stereotype ! Hate the current voice (indian).
  • The Indian English accent is terrible. You can't change that. Cortana will speak just the way it is.
  • They must've re-recorded everything, the current language set cant handle it all i guess... Just hope they get a decent north-indian (and not a punjabi) to do the voice-overs and not a south indian (she sounds like one, the current one)
    Also hoping that this time they dont limit some features for us, like they have done right now...
    Fed up of the useless accent and the lack of features in indian speech set, advising all Indians to install UK speech set and not indian !
  • I am an Indian and...i don't find this offensive
    cortana ftw!
  • Don't be so shure, wp8 also has those folders
  • I wish Tom Warren didn't work for the verge. He's the only reason I bother with them. That, or I wish folks in the know here would be as willing to leak info as he is.
  • yeah I miss winrumors. I CAN'T STAND the verge.
  • Exactly!
  • It would be nice if he was working at WPC, but I think it's good that he's at TheVerge, especially since the Verge gets more traffic and is linked to major news sites.  He balances out the Apple/Android Fanboy writers there who are often bias or completely ignorant of the MS ecosystem.  One senior editor at TheVerge was completely unaware of the MS vs Sky copyright trial, and tried to claim MS was rebranding Skydrive to Onedrive because Skydrive was a failure.  Luckily Tom corrected him and made the guy look like a fool.
  • Sorry, but he was a better writer when he ran his own site winrumors. I thing the verge doesn't give him the freedom he once had as I've seen some very suspect articles he's written since he became an employee at the verge. I still like Tom, but as stated, I think the verge has some restrictive guidlines on him because I've seen more negative press towards windows since he transitioned there.
  • As much as an MS fan would like to hate The Verge, we must admit that The Verge has more than enough clout to get every other tech bloggers talking. Name of the blog appears to be more important than the people working in it. If Tom Warren wasn't in The Verge, we probably wouldn't even hear the news. Compare that to WMPU, they are not taken seriously because they have an excellent track record of posting fake news.
  • you know what is also minimalistic and to the point: the horrible favorites lists of IE mobile...which makes them useless.
  • If you have red theme set, cortana will look like the eye of sauron!
  • +1 Posted via the Awesome windows phone central app.
  • thankyou Sir, you have just made my week!
  • Hahahaha, indeed.
  • But Bing is good only for the US outside the US its just crap
  • Works fine in the UK =/
  • It sucks big balls in Portugal, unfortunately. Believe me, I've tried Bing and google search side by side and Bings results are pathetic.
  • Minimalistic and subtle, like this very much.
  • Sorry.. Little immature i know.. But... Boobies.... That is all
  • I hope Cortana works well right out of the box and is as promising as all of these articles are making it out to be.
  • I don't want to be over optimistic. Just want MS to get a few basic and useful things right.
  • It's pretty useful now.
  • +925
  • Nobody here is claiming to have used it. Its all and how well Microsoft does the marketing. Was Siri great when it was first released? Hell no! But. They did the right commercials and it sold well.
  • Sure, but Siri is the first one in. Cortana being the third, next to google. So cortana should be much optimized at launch
  • Google now is better just for surfing not for reminding or doing things what Siri can do. Google now has a voice which is pathetic. But is good on catching words properly.
  • You can set reminders on Google its not that bad
  • Google Now can do everything Siri does, so get your facts straight. Except, of course, being your virtual buddy. Posted via the WPC App for Android!
  • TellMe is first. WinMo had great voice commands too, just no audible response.
  • A lot of early reports said that MS could have shipped this a long time ago but there were waiting to make sure it would stand out from the crowd rather than just be a copy of what everyone else is doing.  I hope this is true and it offers more than just voice features.  I believe it is supposed to be a personal assitant that will help even when you aren't asking it to.
  • Can't see how a circle can stand out... What about a pretty face instead? The've already done it:
  • No v1 product is ever perfect.  Hopefully it is good enough.
  • Absorbing! It reminds me halo 1
  • absorBING :D
  • Lol!
  • Mind = blown.
  • I like it. As someone who played Halo, Cortana is more about the voice anyway. I do hope they get that part right. Hopefully they can expand her role into thirdparty apps. Like have her tell me my running speed or being my GPS.
  • Yea I agree that it was more about the voice in Halo, and I also hope they do get that right to.
  • I've also played Halo. The voice is important but the character is also iconic. I'd be fine with this being how she appears around the OS but it'd be nice to have a hub or app where she actually appeared. Also would help set it apart from Siri and the like by giving it someone to see.
  • I'm fine without an avatar. The one thing I'd like to see is a personality, like the comment up there "I'm absorbing the entire internet. Won't take long..." If they can properly expand on that Cortana will be a win
  • Agreed. Cortana's "attitude" is her best feature (cause that body is just a striking hologram) and if they can port that over to a personal assistant I would be so very happy.
    I fantasize about my phone going "Chief, you're gonna be late for that managers' meeting if you don't leave now, traffic is piling up going into town". I really hope she gets to be that sophisticated.
  • That screen shot has me a little suspicious. The description immediately below Cortana's on switch reflects the opposite of the switch's state.
  • Oh, you're right! Nice catch. Doesn't necessarily mean it's fake, but definitely calls credibility into question.
  • I think that's just the features overview, which you can turn on or off of course.
  • @daniel Rubino if you're reading this. You had mentioned there was some sort of hesitation on calling it, "Cortana" internally at Microsoft. Does this mean that concern exists no more?
  • "Hesistaiton" is corporate speak for "we haven't heard back from the legal team yet." I think the concern was whether Microsoft still owned the rights to that name or if it had transfered to 343 Industries as Microsoft is just the publisher, not that developer.
  • Microsoft owns the rights to the halo franchise.
  • With that said, wouldn't it be cool is Microsoft shipped a "Sound Pack" that included the Halo ringtone, gun shot sounds from varies Halo guns for when you receive messages, and other sounds from the franchise? :)
  • I already use Halo themes for my ringtones mostly but I would love a notification sound that sounded like an Elite giving orders to some Grunts
  • That will be cool.
  • Microsoft fully owns everything Halo. They also fully own 343i as they were the one's who created them.
  • Well, there still might have been a clash of VPs that prevented its use. From a marketing standpoint, I can see both points. One the one hand, it is free advertising for Halo. One the other hand, you don't want to water it down. Cortana has a particular personality that is very important to the Halo franchise. There may have been some in Microsoft who weren't willing to turn her into a mass phone function.
  • I hope not...cortana sounds like a word for coitus in my language:D
  • So does about every other word in Japanese.
  • Cortana is actually the AI computer character in Halo. So, I presume Microsoft owns every right to that name...
  • But why no Korean... While supporting Japanese and Chinese
  • Just hope it's not limited to the US and A.
  • Probably. Im not expecting it to work here in Sweden anyway.
  • Cortana US only or the while world?
  • Probably USA first since it takes time to localize all the functionality. Although they would be foolish if they didn't include it to some extend worldwide but turned off. That way regular users wont have to deal with something that doesnt work properly for them but WP enthousiasts can still show her off.
  • But cortana can perform activities in India too. Ppl speak English here also
  • Language is one thing, accent is another and from experience, Indian English is some of the hardest to understand.
  • There was an article on WPcentral about the languages it will support at launch. So, I think it will be available worldwide. It also had English-India, so we won't have to suddenly twist out voices into an American accent to talk to her.
  • Hahaha
  • Tom Warren disagrees :(
  • Full on S&M, dominate that internet, make it your bitch! LOL
  • Better than nothing I guess.
  • Lmao wow
  • Why do I get notifications for a comment I have nothing to do with?
  • Once you respond to a comment you're in for the ride, unless you turn the option off like I did.
  • That's the thing, I didn't
  • I really wish we could name it whatever we wanted. And Microsoft needs to integrate this within their other services ASAP. That way I could ask Cortana about the newest Xbox One game from my phone, and vocally tell her to purchase it. Then when I get home, it is already downloaded onto my console. Cortana could really take this "One Microsoft" concept so much further.
  • I'd love to see that happen.
  • I call that being lazy. Sure your idea is great, but you're missing some details
  • Well, I felt a 30 minute powerpoint presentation about all of the ways a Cortana personal assistant could integrate fully into the One Microsoft vision to be a bit long for a blog comment. ;)
  • LOL Wow your funny, thanks for the Laugh this morning!!! ;)
  • Its been said by many sources that that is the plan.
  • +1520
  • Yeah, but people like taking information that was put out months ago and regurgitating it as their own feature idea/request.
  • Will it be in Lumia 520?
  • All devices get ready
  • Except for the 810.
  • Yes
  • Can I meet her also in the real world? I have so many questions...
  • Yeah there is a "lady" in Paris ... She is by the alley in and around the eiffel tower you can talk to her and everything but she will charge you on an hour basis so clear doubts quickly...:P
  • At the "bois de boulogne?" :P
  • LOL!!!
  • Am I the only one around here who expects cortana to be like the operating system 'Samantha' as in the movie "Her" ?
  • Your expectations are way too high my friend xD
  • No there not! Lol But for tho, in a few yrs I see her becoming like that with advances in AI and processing power. Still ScarJo's voice would be plus! Jen Taylor is cool too...
  • Scarlett Johansson talking to me through my phone?! :swoon:
  • I hope , i hope , i hope it will launched worldwide not only for US in the first year .
  • Sweet..
  • Most will compare it to Siri but I think it will be more of a Google Now competitor. Siri is amateur hour compared to GNow. You are going to need to sacrifice some privacy. People complain about how much information Google Now needs but if you want something more than a coversation with Siri you will need to let it have access to more of your info. Just like Google Now with the package tracking and flights detected from emails. People complained up the ass. Wonder what they think now.
  • Tom Warren said it's a combination of the best of both.
  • i see alot of commentscabout privacy. I think Microsoft needs to be crystal clear on how they use the data compared to Google. Actually, a, nice long simple advertisement with Bill Gates telling us how Microsoft cares about privacy would be a good move. Questions to answer include: Where is informatin from the notebok stored? How many locations will house the data? When will the databe expunged? Will Microsoft mine the data dor commercil puposes or sell the sata, even anonymous data?    
  • How is it a "competitor" to anything when it's made for a comepletely different OS??
  • It is a competitor because it helps WP compete with other mobile os's with similar service... mainly iOS and Android. Cortana will be another factor for people when choosing which platform to go with. If you want a good voice/personal assistant on your mobile device, you can basically rule out Blackberry 10 when compared to iOS, Android and WP8
  • I just really hope you don't have to speak to Cortana all the time to use it - Google Now is smart because it's subtle when you need it to be, whereas you always need to talk to Siri to get anything done and tbh you look silly doing so
  • Won't this be announced at Build itself? And why does Rich keep saying "WP8.1 will be announced later this year?"
  • Because Build is later this year.
  • He wrote "released" not announced. And that's because 8.1 should only start to hit current unbranded devices during Summer. And given the time carriers take, it's safe to say the process will only be finalized by late 2014.
  • All that matters is whether or not Jen Taylor will be the voice of the assistant.
  • Definitely wanna hear her. Hopefully English will be her voice. Cortana is coming in other languages too, right?
  • ppl say its fake. But of its true its awesome
  • Well.. the question whether its fake or not is pretty useless since the title of the video says it all: "Concept video"
  • Cortana has some nice funbags.
  • So they are officially calling it ''Cortana''
    Isn't that news too?
  • I hope we can call it what we like as well.. I mean Cortana is kinda strange name to call out every now and then. More customization = More awesome.
  • In the MUI strings it was clearly written something alongs the lines of "Change Cortana's language". Not "Change < + 's> language". So seems like their will be no customization...
  • Cant wait for april..btw will this be available to lower end devices like 520???
  • Yes it will be available for all devices...
  • I better be, I mean, 4s had a dual core 800mhz with 512RAM, so 520 should run similar program flawlessly
  • Yawn.
    Question asked... answered with "well, iPhone is/was...".
  • Still no word on the voice, I hope that one of the options (or the only option) is that of Jen Taylor :D
  • I hope so! Jen is awesome!
  • I was hoping the "avatar" would be a little more flourished.  I'll have to see it in action, though.
  • I hope cortana will not behave like GLadOS
  • GladOS makes too many fat jokes. But I love her anyway-- one of the best (sort of) villains in gaming.
  • I'm sure an enterprising dev will take the second screentshot and create an app that turns it into the first screenshot and make bank at $1.99/ea from Halo n3rds ;)
  • I'd love it, wouldn't you? I think everyone would love it except maybe girls :p
  • I'm just glad they kept the name. There's nothing stopping them from implementing her actual likeness in a future update.
  • I don't think anybody expected it to be a full blown character model... No disappointment here..
  • Exactly. Don't know where they got that idea from.
  • I did!
  • Have you ever seen what they have already done?
  • If Cortana's animated image shows up like Xbox avatars while searching instead of just icon and text that would be epic.
  • as long as you can control that feature...keep in mind not everyone is a halo fan and some people would probably be weirded out by that
  • Of course choices are always good.
  • True, but it gives gamers and tech heads something, call it fan service like in anime! As long as she isn't sexualized I wouldn't see the problem, especially if the animation could be turned on or off.
  • that's funny "as long as she isn't sexualized"   You've played Halo, yes?   Just look at that first jpeg in this story, she's just this side of nude.
  • I hope its not slow and buggy like most of the things :-\
  • Slow and buggy like what? Are you referring to a WP feature or just in general?
  • What I am reffering to is a general lag as well as lags and bugs in apps.general lags like opening settings resuming applications going to home lage from wifi app lags are just enormous - whatsapp(ughhh),fb,most of it for that matter.coming from ios this just irritates the hell outta me,can they make the OS more efficient overall?I hope on 8.1.i hope they dont just put in tons of features and they take 10 seconds to open and 10 more seconds to function.DONT WANT SUCH AN UPDATE :-(
  • My 1520 doesn't lag in general, but speedy performance is tied to dev coding and processing power. I'm cool with the speed of the OS, but it doesn't mean it can't be even better.
  • this.this=this :/
  • Lags, bugs?  What android phone are you using?
  • WhatsApp opening lag to crashing of most apps to random reboots.yes sir m using a windows phone. :-/
  • You mean like all things on android, right?
  • Android?as in? But yes.apps on android are hell lotta smoother,better,and usable.why cant they devlop such apps for wp?seriously why?even if we have cortana,action centre and lagggy buggy apps(WhatsApp,fb,what not) there is no point.seriously no point :-/
  • "I'm absorbing the entire internet, wont take long." Hahaha:)
  • wich languages support by cortana ? is Persian/farsi supported ?
  • The level of fit & finish in the Cortana settings screen suggests this is not done, or they are 6mo screenshots. No, it wouldn't take long for a dev to build a settings screen, but I think it's more likely the timeline for this feature shouldn't be assumed to match all the other leaks.
  • I once asked Siri when will the world will end?
    It replied, "once they get round to building that Galactic by-pass" Cortana will need something like this
  • Why...??
  • Because its the only interesting thing Siri does.
  • So lets say 'cortana' doesn't do that, but does a bunch of "better" stuff. Will that one minor thing still matter?
  • wow , can't wait :D
  • Now only if they can get Scarlett Johansson to do the voice and we have a certified winner!
  • Why Scarlett? Jen Taylor 100%. It's the only option since she is Cortana
  • I searched and saw Jen is the actual voice, but have you seen the movie Her and ScarJo's performance in it! That's what a personal assistant sounds like to me! And no, I'm not new here, been on WP since it started!
  • You must be new here...
  • Hahaha
  • +1
  • Please see yourself out
  • Actually, a fun bit of trivia, but Scarlett was a last minute replacement for the voice of Samantha. Spike Jonze shot the movie with actress Samantha Morton doing the voice work, decided it wasn't working for the film, and brought in Johansson in post production to do the voice.   On set, Phoenix was reacting back to Samantha Morton's voice.
  • The blue circle and that page looks so blank. And why is it to the top left? Should be in the middle of the page.
  • Any information (think graphically) will likely be covered if it were in the middle of the screen.
  • Oh please please please sound like Jen Taylor!
  • Yes Jen Taylors voice would be awesome but a scarjo's voice pack option would be double awesome. Man can dream.
  • lol I'd be too worried I'd fall in love with it and they'd make a movie about it
  • +920
  • Doubt it'll ever get Swedish support. No voice assistant, tts or speech to text has supported Swedish as far as I know. Only basic voice command, which WP8 doesn't support either.
  • What do you mean... basic voice command?
  • I realize I should already know this, but will all windows 8 phones she able to update to windows
    phone 8.1 like any other OS update?
  • I would like it if it had a deep Scottish accent it's gonna sound awesome
  • How about we put that purple cyberwench to rest, Mr. Edmonds? There's no need to make this article cheesy.
  • (nothing to see here, move along)
  • Whats the problem with a Circle?
  • for some reason i thought the header image would feature somewhere, not just the circle.. i like circles and all other shapes haha.:)
  • Cortana, quick where's my needler!?
  • You would use the needler. Weak.
  • Weak huh, seems you know what it taste like then huh.
  • I collect needles like they were rare comic books. Then I go boom!
  • Boom!
  • LOL :)
  • I wanna see my car driving assistant using this technology
  • I'm glad there won't be boobs popping out at me. Bit embarrassing to use in public
  • Will Lumia 520 support windows phone 8.1...? When released...
  • Yup
  • Pretty weak and misleading... saying 'this is what it will look like' with a picture of Cortana advertised, then the actual voice assistant image buried.
  • Right!
  • Nice but they should change "absorbing" to "absorBING" ;)
  • +1020 :)
  • Hahaha :D +8.1
  • Can I haz it? Posted via the WPC App for Android!
  • Not for kids.
  • Why not? Unlike most Americans, I don't see what the big deal is about seeing/celebrating the human form. I'd much rather have my kids see a naked-looking female form than a spray of brain matter on a wall and/or other associated gore.
  • If you want porn on your phone or exposed to your kids, that's your call...I don't and wont!
  • What on Earth are you on about kingjah? Cortana will not look like she does in the game or in this articles first (rather misleading) shot. Cool your Jets and actually read the article.  
  • This looks promising
  • Will take like five years for it to be released in Scandinavian languages anw.
  • I would be happy if we had speech recognition in our languages.
  • I have a problem with it being used. Why is it a necessity?
  •   You're forgetting this one!
  • A naked girl??
  • I don't know if mothers want kids using it....i like it
  • Or Fathers.
  • This is sick!
  • looks like designed for people with bad eyesight and low dpi screens. In other words, tired, boring and outdated, like the 2011 windows phone UI which still fails to embrace its 400+ dpi screens capable of rendering microfonts and 16 million colors per pixel
  • Agree 100% so tired and so boring.. They need to wakeup
  • What is interesting to note is that it will be called "Cortana". But I don't want to get my expectations too high, this probably won't come to non-US countries either.
  • What's it good for? All I really want of 8.1 is a landscape orientation of the start screen, so it is usable in the car. Ok perhaps not all...
  • "later" this year. I can't remember from previous articles, but how much later? Impatient , but excited for it to come and I only want the best.
  • If you're on T-mobile... well... nevermind I wont get all negative 'n stuff.  :-/    
  • So, Cortana will learn your likes and dislikes, and call you by name? That could be...embarassing.
    "Hello, Dave, would you like to return to viewing animal sex videos now, or would you like a new search for anal sex toys?"
    Could make the bus ride to work rather uncomfortable.
  • That got a literal "LOL" from me.
  • Now that was FUNNY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
  • That is why there is an option for not calling by name. :P
  • "I'm afraid I can't do that Dave"
  • Microsoft is so stupid at times if this is what it really looks like... They let opportunity just past them by, it would be so much better if it was the actual Contina lady that come up...smh at Microsoft. Very disappointed in their decisions they make. I'll take it and use it though but it could be so much better, watch Apple or Google use that concept that Microsoft should have used.
  • you have to understand one thing: cotana is naked. it's a character designed to basically please the halo fans but imagine the general press acusing MSFT of objectifying women to try to gain mobile traction? they can get away with it in halo because videogames are basically de-facto wild wests where nearly anything goes. however are you really going to have a naked blue lady show up in that projector in front of the board of directors? no. didn't think so.
  • I love cortana
  • Dream on dude, no woman would touch that dirty inch worm tainted by your mom.
  • To be honest, I wasn't expecting a cortana animation thingy. But so far I like what I see. Posted via the WPC App for Android!
  • How much memory cortana will take? Asking for 16gb Lumia 925. ( 'Other' storage issues )
  • MS LISTENING....yall need tu show her in tha screen that will tha best experience ever. Trust me
  • I want Master chiefs voice... Who's with me ! )) Not just because I'm a man that likes the sound of a man aka master chiefs firm yet gentle voice((( I'll go get help now
  • Valve should make own smatphone and create voice asistaint glaDOS :)
  • Cool!
  • Lets hope its better than Jarvis from Iron Man ;)
  • Cortana is looking incredible, like an amazing yet harmonious hybrid of the personality and sass of Siri, but still incorporating the usefulness and accuracy of Google Now. Cortana is looking like a winner, and this could very well put Microsoft on top. After all, Windows Phone 8.1 will catch Microsoft up in all missing features. So if Cortana is pulled off well, then Microsoft can finally forge ahead! This is getting exciting, can't wait until April 2nd! Oh, and I love how she says, "Absorbing the entire Internet... Won't take long." Priceless xD
  • Can't wait for this. Finally something to rival Siri and Google Now.
  • No Image of Cortana, No Sell or Use from me.
  • I'm going to have her refer to me as Sgt. Johnson
  • Sadly, most features will not be available outside US. And voice recognition for Indian English, unlike Google Now, sucks..
  • So long as she sounds like Jen Taylor and has a witty personality, I can wait for a visual rendering of her.
  • I want to be able to say "Cortana, add this song to my workout playlist" while I'm driving and listening to my Xbox music through Bluetooth in my car.
  • Can I have it speak in Judy Dench's voice?  And have her call me 007? 
  • Wow. From a pregnant girl to the circle? A return to innosence.
  • Very dark area between her legs. 
  • Wow your post literally stopped me for a sec! LOL
  • I'm waiting for Majel Barrett's voice to be digitized & made available for voice response.
  • Haha, that would be pretty cool, especially if you can change cortana's name to "computer".
  • Right on! Doesn't CBS/Paramount have enough voice samples of her on file to do that? Seems very possible.
  • It does seem possible, especially since the did a similar thing for Roger Ebert after he lost his ability to speak from cancer.  MS would gain a lot of attention for the WP platform if they offered additional voice packs you could download to replace Cortana.  I'd gladly pay for Majel Berret or KITT from Knight Rider.
  • +1701
  • ST geeks for the win!   Yes, Majel's voice would be very nice.   I've already got her telling me "Priority One message from Star Fleet coming in on secure channel" as my ringtone.   My text message notification sound is Worf stating "Captain, incoming message".
  • All the little gameheads getting excited. There is a massive majority outside there that doesn't play games so attaching Halo characteristics to it would marginalize the functionality and switch people off. I for one don't want a stupid game character on my phone. Next thing you'll be wanting achievements for talking to it.
  • As long as its the actual Cortana voice and not some robotic & generic Siri rip-off then I could care less about the visual presentation aspect.
  • She looks pregnant!!!
  • All nice and dandy, but what about hearing more about language support, because microsoft is VERY VERY Far away from any adequate full multilangual support. After 2 years of windows phone and a full year of windows 8 on the surface pro, I have seen not one shred of audio language and text-to speech and speech-to-text recognition for my language Dutch. So it's nice this system got a personification in the form of Cortana, but untill microsoft manages to solve some basic issues, the light of day of Cortana means diddlysquad.
  • This is a necessary me too feature but otherwise a waste of time and resources. I don't want to yell at my phone.  I don't need it to suck my battery which is what happens in other platforms. I find it hilarious that nobody uses their phones to actually dial and call people and instead text, but we can take the time to yell at our phones instead simply searching for some terms?
  • Did people seriously expect to have Cortana come in and take up the whole screen whenever you needed something? Ew.
  • Oh I'm.interested in learning more about the notebook system. Hope cortana works better than others. If you've seen the LEGO Movie, you'll know what I mean. LOL
  • Is it just me or does she look like Sandra Bullock a little bit. They better becareful because actresses/models are suing over that these days. LOl...!!!!
  • I think this is a fake image. Under the On Button, the text written seems to be for Off . Maybe I am wrong and misinterpreting.
  • Bit disappointing.  Would at least like the option of a simplified Cortana face in the small circle or something. Otherwise the Cortana name is almost pointless, other than to drum up some hype. I like how right under the Headline is a mockup pic that is one of the worst pictures of her and has nothing to do with how it will look at all lol.    
  • I will name it ADA
  • To all the haters, I enjoy your feedback. Its great to see your passion for your products. Its not about catching up, its about how you finish. That, my friends, we shall see soon enough.
  • Would love to customize the avatar to Ed's avatar from Cowboy Bebop:
  • This so needs to have the option to use xbox avatars!
  •    I just hope that Cortana can live up to the hype and expectations.
  • Awesome
  • Oh. I like the look.
  • i dont like that eye
  • Call me Vic Boss
  • WP 8.1 can't come soon enough!
  • Hopefully Cortana won't be the biggest feature. I haven't seen a single person actually use Siri, but I've seen it accidentally triggered many many times. I know I rarely use voice on the go, but if we can tap into Cortana on things like cars, then it'll be good.
  • One word - Clippy.
  • edi and shephard anyone?
  • Got excited with the snapshot of this article ....but still it would better if they provide this feature in next update.    
  • Looking good, hope this feature will come to all the variants of Lumia.
  • I really don't like being that guy, but I think this will be a great idea for about a month or two, then people won't use it that much. It's what's been happening with Siri and with Google Now and I don't see Cortana being all that different in terms of overall usage :( . It'll be fun for a minute, though! Posted via the WPC App for Android!
  • Am I the only one that is excited at the fact that it has been "confirmed" that Jen Taylor who did the voice of Cortana on the Halo saga is doing the voice for Cortana on WP 8.1!!!!!!!!  
  • I like this. If they implement a solid notification system as well I could switch back to windows phone. Posted via the WPC App for Android!