Cortana is the virtual search assistant from Microsoft that comeS pre-loaded with all Windows 10 versions. It was first launched on Windows Phones and gained positive reviews because of its accurate search results and quick voice command recognition capabilities. Many argue that it even leaves Apple’s Siri and Google Now search assistants behind in certain respects. Cortana’s rapid popularity goaded Microsoft to launch PC Windows 10 version of it as well. Aside voice commands you can also type queries. Cortana search assistant has proved to be pretty stable after vigorous testing, however, if for some reason it has started acting up on your Windows PC, laptops or tablets then there are ways to fix Cortana errors on the spot. It’s modern intelligence system saves your search pattern and displays personalized search results based on your past preferences in an attempt to keep things more focused on your personal liking. In this post we will explain top 10 best Cortana features for users of Windows 10 PC.
1 – Web Search with Google search Engine
When you voice or type search commands in Cortana, it automatically displays results from Bing search engine. It is set as default by Microsoft to promote its own search engine over those of rivals. You can set different default web browsers such as Chrome or Firefox rather than Microsoft Edge, you can even change search engine with Edge Browser, but you can’t change Cortana search engine from Bing from Windows 10 settings.
However, there is an easy fix for making Google, Yahoo or DuckDuckGo as default search engine on Cortana with Chrometena Chrome extension. Chrometena redirects all Cortana web search commands from Bing to your desired search engine and displays results based on engines other than Bing.
2 – Set Reminders
There is more to Cortana than just getting reminders at particular point in time. With Cortana’s ‘set reminder’ feature, you can set reminders for people, places, meeting schedules, birthdays & anniversaries and lots more. Simply open Cortana and say ‘Remind Me’ to get started followed by reminder details about particular person, specific time or location.
3 – Flight & Package Tracking
With Cortana it is easier than ever to check your latest flight timings and current package delivery status by simply entering flight or package tracking number in the search box.
4 – Song Search and Identification
Just like popular music search app Shazam, Cortana picks up the sound of the song playing near your PC, laptop or tablet via microphone and immediately displays all relevant song information on the screen. Or you could say or type ‘what is this song?’ to Cortana and it will bring song history along with its popular remix versions on the screen.
5 – Fact Finding
Anything you want to know, be it any historical facts, current happenings around the world or technology news, Cortana is there for you to provide search results via default Bing search engine in seconds, to change search engine see feature number one on this list. Cortana finds latest sports scores, translates words, plays music and there is plenty more coming soon as it is being constantly improved by Microsoft.
6 – Run Programs
With Cortana enabled on your PC, there is no linger any need to first find the location where a particular program is saved and then open it. Just enter voice command like “hey Cortana, open Microsoft Edge” and it will be open right there and then. You can use voice command to launch any program or open documents saved on PC with Cortana.
7 – Find Directions
Find your way around the city or a new place is easy with Cortana. Type or enter voice command like ‘show me direction to [place name]’ and next thing you see on the screen will be directions to your desired location shown on Microsoft 10 map app, which is the default map app set by Microsoft.
8 – Emails
Now sending emails is all the more fun and convenient with Cortana. It uses default Mail app and accounts saved in it, you can change and edit email accounts within default Windows 10 Mail app and use Cortana to send emails from them without opening the mail app. Say “send mail to [recipient’s name]” and you are good to go.
9 – Simple Language
One of the Cortana’s strongest points is its ability to understand commands voiced in any accent and in everyday human language. Not many voice search assistants can rival Cortana on this front. You rarely get misunderstood by Cortana when entering voice commands like say ‘find me [file name] from [month, day, year]’ and it’s done. Cortana doesn’t require you to enter commands in special formats or accents to understand them. Just use normal language for search purposes.
10 – Chat with Cortana
If you are in jolly mode and want to engage in a witty conversation with Cortana then go ahead by all means. Ask Cortana any joke, story or song request and it will snap back with humorous one-liners. It’s a fun way to relax and also to lift your mood.
There is lots more to Cortana than can be covered in this post. So explore Cortana’s full potential and find more interesting features that didn’t get the mention in this article.