Cortana Sports a New Look On Windows Phone 8.1


Cortana may bear a slightly different look than the Halo heroine we’ve come to know and love, but she’ll still call you Master Chief if you want.

The very first images of Cortana, the Siri-like voice-activated “assistant” for Microsoft’s Windows Phone 8.1, have leaked out, and it’s both unsurprising and a little disappointing that this iteration won’t be a scantily-clad pseudo-Asari you can carry in your pocket. Instead, it will be primarily textual, not nearly as sexy but eminently more practical.

Despite the absence of the visual element, there are one or two fan-service connections to Microsoft’s famed shooter franchise. As reported earlier this year, Cortana’s voice will be provided by Jen Taylor, the actress who provides the character’s voice in the Halo games; and somewhat less obvious, Cortana will be represented on Windows phones by a small blue ring – a halo – that will animate whenever it’s “thinking” or speaking.

Cortana will be able to save data in a “Notebook” system that will provide access to location data, reminders, contacts and other “personal information,” and will be able to take advantage of services like Bing and Foursquare, giving it functionality comparable to Google Now. It will also call you by your real name or by nicknames if you prefer, including “Master Chief” if that’s your thing.

Technically, Cortana is just a working name for the software and it hasn’t been confirmed that it will keep that handle in official release. It would be silly to change it now, though, especially when there are other names in far more dire need of change. Windows Phone 8.1? Surely someone at Microsoft can come up with something better than that.

Source: The Verge

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