After numerous leaks, Microsoft has officially announced its Siri and Google Now rival, Cortana.
Microsoft’s Cortana is a personal assistant that will make its debut in the upcoming Windows Phone 8.1 update, which is expected to arrive in the next few months. Microsoft announced this new feature was at its annual Build conference today.
— Windows Phone (@windowsphone) April 2, 2014
A major feature of Cortana will be third-party app support. It’s unclear if Microsoft will permit deep third-party app integration with its personal assistant like Google, or if it will limit such integrations as Apple does.
The Cortana moniker comes from Microsoft’s most successful video game franchise, Halo. Cortana is a female A.I. who helps that sci-fi first-person shooter series’ main character, Master Chief.