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Microsoft to terminate Cortana for iOS and Android from January 31

In a blogpost on their website, Microsoft has revealed that it is planning to kill off the Cortana app for iOS and Android from January 31, 2020. While the blogpost mentioned that users in the UK, Canada and Australia would be impacted, according to media reports, the app will disappear in markets like Germany, Mexico, China, Spain and India as well from January 31. 

Microsoft further said, “To make your personal digital assistant as helpful as possible, we’re integrating Cortana into your Microsoft 365 productivity apps.” The support note also stated that Cortana will be discontinued on Microsoft’s Android Launcher app after January 31. 

Microsoft’s Cortana app is also used to configure settings and update the firmware for devices like the company’s Surface Headphones. Microsoft has not mentioned whether Surface Headphones owners will continue to get access to these features. 

Microsoft had launched Cortana in 2014 along with Windows 8.1 and then later for iOS and Android in late 2015, which was originally designed to connect Windows 10 PCs and mobile phones. However, even after a big redesign, Microsoft failed to compete with other digital assistants like Alexa and Google Assistant. According to media reports, Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella had revealed that they no longer saw Cortana as a competitor to Alexa and Google Assistant. 

Microsoft is focusing on integrating Cortana into more business-focused parts of Microsoft 365. The digital assistant is also being integrated into Outlook for iOS and Android, which will allow it to read emails aloud on the go.

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