Who could have become one of the biggest rivals are now on the verge of becoming friends. An unanticipated partnership between Microsoft and Amazon would put their digital assistants Cortana and Alexa on one device.
Don’t act surprised in the future if you find yourself uttering “Cortana, open Alexa” or “Alexa, open Cortana” on your Windows 10 PC. It would be the first platform where two assistants would integrate, starting later this year.
According to a report by The New York Times, the idea to connect both AI-powered virtual assistants didn’t come out of the blue. It was first pitched by Bezos to Nadella almost a year ago.
The is a win-win situation for both tech titans. The virtual assistants can leverage each other’s powers and privileges.
For instance, the Cortana would help Alexa with its know-how of Microsoft products like Office, and its ability to read work emails, access calendars, etc. While on the other hand, Alexa has its set of around 20,000 skills which Cortana can learn. Cortana users would be able to use Alexa to shop on Amazon and control smart home devices.
Bringing Cortana and Alexa in one picture can also help their makers while having the edge over the counterparts made by Google and Apple. There’s another voice-controlled offering in line, which was made by Android’s daddy a while ago.
Chiefs of both companies have a positive and enthusiastic attitude regarding the collaboration. Nadella described the need of putting Cortana in the hands of more people as their top priority. “Bringing Cortana’s knowledge, Office 365 integration, commitments, and reminders to Alexa is a great step toward that goal,” he added.
According to Amazon’s CEO Jeff Bezos, combining different intelligent agents with varying skill sets and access to different data can deliver a “richer and even more helpful experience.”
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