Virtual Assistant – Cortana

You may be familiar with using Siri and Google Assistant as your virtual assistant apps. Cortana is Microsoft’s own virtual assistant app. It is similar to Apple’s assistant Siri. In Windows 10, you can use Cortana with voice commands to do many things such as open files, programs, search files, call people, send SMS and email, take notes, etc. You can use Cortana on Android devices and Windows 10 computers. If you have a Windows 10 computer and would like to try it, you can enable Cortana with the following steps.

How to enable Cortana by voice on Windows 10
Right Click Windows logo, select Search on your taskbar, or use the keyboard shortcut Windows + S. Type Cortana in the search box.

Click ‘Cortana Permissions’ setting. Click ‘Talk to Cortana’.
Turn the ‘Hey Cortana’ toggle on to select the voice command option. Turn the Keyboard shortcut toggle on.

Select Talk to Cortana and Turn on voice command option, “Hey Cortana”

Cortana can display information based on your interests such as news, sports, shopping etc. After enabling Cortana and checking your microphone’s volume, try the following example.


Press Windows logo + C or say “Hey Cortana” and say, “Weather in New York”. Then the Cortana displays the weather in New York.

This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is image-5.png
Cortana dictates what you said, “weather in New York” and displays the weather in New York.

You can enable Cortana in the MS Edge browser by enabling Cortana from Advanced settings. However, if you use Chrome/Firefox, it looks like you will need to tweak the setting to use it (here is the additional information:

For Android phone, go to Play store and Search “Cortana”.

Cortana apps for Android

If you have a MS Account and would like to expand the capabilities of Cortana, the following websites provide you with additional information.

Microsoft Build: Cortana + Alexa Demo (Youtube 2018 posted by Microsoft)

Microsoft build: Cortana + Alexa demo by Microsoft, 2018

Of course, not only Cortana, any other virtual assistant apps may bring up privacy issues concerning what information can go to the third party companies that control virtual assistants and how this data may be used. As far as Cortana, you can disable Cortana or clear the search history. You may also check more information about the “Permissions and History” tab because Cortana can access a lot of information about you and your device. If you need more privacy settings information in Cortana, you may go to:

This entry was posted in Accessibility Features, Android, Assistive Technology, AT_Apps, Blind, Windows. Bookmark the permalink.

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