As long-rumored, Cortana will soon have a new home in Outlook on iOS that goes beyond just the "Play my Emails" feature. Microsoft detailed today how you'll soon be able to enjoy conversational AI experiences, voice prompts, and a lot more in Outlook with Cortana.
Seen in the minute-long video below, the new Cortana experience in Outlook for iOS is designed to help you get things done more quickly on an iPhone or iPad. The experience is still rolling out and will come to everyone in the "coming weeks," and once available, you'll see the new event and message buttons on your Inbox and Calendar screens.
When you get it, to use Cortana in the Outlook app on iOS, you can press and expand the buttons on the bottom bar and choose the Ask Cortana microphone icon. This will then give you access to use Cortana to help schedule new events and customize event details on the screen, without the need to navigate through different menus. You also ask Cortana to find specific events. too. Other features planned for Cortana can be seen below.
- You will also be able to use natural language voice commands in your Inbox and email messages
- Cortana can help you compose quick messages, forward emails to your contacts or people in your organization and reply to the sender or all the recipients of the message or conversation thread.
- The new message button on your Focused Inbox will give you the ability to ask Cortana to start a short message
Microsoft is planning some additional updates in the future for this feature, too. The company says they'll make it easier to compose full, longer email messages by adding Dictate to Outlook for iOS. In addition, by the end of February, you will be able to open an email message in Outlook and if it is one you would like to listen to rather than read, you can choose to play the conversation from an option within the ellipses. Play My Emails will also get the ability to play on a scheduled basis, and the option to automatically connect to a car audio system.