Microsoft Cortana lands on Android

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Standing by its previous promise of releasing Cortana on Android, Microsoft has rolled out a public beta of its digital assistant in the US.

Microsoft, in May, confirmed that it was working on an Android and iOS version of its digital assistant. The release comes just over a month after an unofficial version of Cortana was released by some beta testers. The launch comes as part of Microsoft’s strategy to expand its mobile presence despite a weak showing for its Windows Phone devices.

Microsoft Cortana is Redmond’s reply to Apple’s Siri, and Google Now. Users can use ‘Cortana’ to set reminders, search the web, track flight information, check for weather and traffic updates and manage tasks, all through voice commands.

Though many of the features of Cortana on Android are similar to what you would have seen on Windows 10 and Windows Phone versions, one many thing it lacks is ‘Hey Cortana’ support, due to hardware limitations that prevent the digital assistant from always listening for the command.

The Cortana app for Android is currently available only in the United States via Google Play Store. However, Redmond plans to bring the personal digital voice assistant to other regions for other Android users in the future but no word on when exactly.

Android U.S. users interested in trying out Cortana can first join the beta program and then download the app from Google Play.