It seems like a familiar refrain: Microsoft toys with an innovative product, only to let it languish while other players build a better more popular service, leaving the Redmond giant to try, usually unsuccessfully, to play catch up. It’s the Windows Phone story (and the Zune story, and the Groove story, and on and on).
Seemingly here we are again with Cortana. Microsoft has been playing with the idea of digital assistants since the days of Clippy, and when Cortana made her first appearance at Build in 2013, the future looked bright. Since then, however, Microsoft has been yet again eclipsed in what has become a crowded field, dominated by Amazon’s Alexa, but including plays from Google’s Home and Apple’s Siri.
Still, Microsoft doesn’t seem ready to throw in the towel. Former Acompli exec Javier Soltero, who had been heading up Outlook, is Microsoft’s new CVP for Cortana, and the company continues to insist that there’s a bright future ahead. A long planned integration between Cortana and Alexa is still in the works, and at yesterday’s Windows Insider podcast, the Cortana team showed off new capabilities for the Harman Kardon Invoke, and hinted at not only more new capabilities to come, but on more devices.
So, has Microsoft yet again waited too long? Or can Cortana still thrive? Take out poll below and let us know what you think:
Will Microsoft be able to compete against Alexa and against the likes of Google and Apple in an increasingly mobile-centric space? Is there a place for Cortana even without a dominant position in the market, with deep connections to Office 365 and the Microsoft Graph? Have you given up on Cortana, or is there still a future? Let us know in the comments below