If you live in the UK, Canada, and Australia and have been enjoying Cortana on iOS and Android, then we have some bad news for you. This coming January, Microsoft will be shutting down and killing off the Cortana apps on these two platforms and in these markets as part of moving the assistant into the Microsoft 365 productivity apps (via The Verge.)
It’s not clear if this will also impact the United States, but word on this move first appeared in a Microsoft UK support article which explains changes to Cortana services. According to Microsoft, this will all make Cortana more helpful, taking into effect on January 31st, 2020. The company explains:
To make your personal digital assistant as helpful as possible, we’re integrating Cortana into your Microsoft 365 productivity apps. As part of this evolution, on January 31st, 2020, we’re ending support for the Cortana app on Android and iOS in your market.
It’s important to note that after this date in these markets, all Cortana content will no longer function on iOS and Android. That includes reminders, and lists, as well as the Cortana integration in Microsoft Launcher. Microsoft recommends for people to see this content though the Cortana app on Windows 10, which is not discontinued, or via the Microsoft To Do App.
As rumors indicated, Microsoft appears to be repositioning Cortana a bit to more of a business and productivity-related assistant. Cortana has already arrived in Outlook on iOS in the United States for some users, allowing them to have the assistant read aloud emails or receive voice input to allow for various actions. Microsoft is also redesigning Cortana on Windows 10 and has freed it from the search bar, which will also allow Microsoft to update Cortana via the Microsoft Store.