Microsoft and Amazon show off their Alexa-Cortana collaboration

Ismael LynchMay 08, 2018

After announcing the integration of Cortana with Amazon's Alexa previous year, Microsoft today showcased a demo of both assistants working in tandem to get tasks done. But the company at its Build developer conference today did show off how that integration will work, in an on-stage demo with support from Amazon, and it launched a new website for developers interested in receiving Alexa-Cortana integration news and information going forward. In the past, you've been able to change that to be Microsoft's Cortana instead (or "None"), but now you can also set it to use Amazon's Alexa.

When Alexa was asked "What do you think of Cortana?" on a Windows 10 PC, the AI assistant responded "I like Cortana".

While using Cortana on his PC, he said to Microsoft's Assistant, "Hey Cortana, open Alexa".

The assistant integration is the fruit of a partnership that began a year ago, when the two companies announced the intent to make their two assistants compatible. A user will simply need to summon Amazon's voice assistant and say "Alexa, open Cortana".

Perhaps, though, what Microsoft really wants is to benefit from Alexa's momentum.

Don't forget, we can send you radio news via email direct to your inbox every weekday at 11am. Alexa booked an Uber ride for him. "We both have experience with rings, although hers is more of a Halo". Microsoft boasts productivity features in Cortana, and Amazon has tens of thousands of Skills for Alexa.

"I like Cortana", Alexa said.

It's worth noting that the ability to purchase movie tickets was also added to Assistant today, including those for May 25th's Solo: A Star Wars Story, but the feature is only available in the US through American service Fandango.

Microsoft said that the digital assistant integration is now only available in a limited beta but those interested can sign up here to receive an alert when it goes live.

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