On October 22, Microsoft launched the Harman Kardon Invoke, a Cortana-powered speaker to take on Alexa and Google Home. As the speaker is powered by Microsoft’s digital assistant Cortana, it comes with all voice-command enabled feature you will find on Windows platform.
The intelligent personal assistant, Cortana was launched back in 2014 with Windows Phone 8.1 operating system and now it is available for PCs, Tablets, Windows Mixed Reality, Xbox One, Android and iOS with over 148 million monthly active users. As Cortana is popular, Microsoft is constantly adding new features and improvements to the digital assistant.
“Microsoft has been on a long journey with Cortana, first on Windows 10 PC, then on Android and iOS, as well as embedding the Cortana experience in Skype on Xbox, spanning 148 million active users,” Andrew Shuman, Corporate Vice President, Cortana Engineering at Microsoft said in a blog post.
Now it appears that Cortana skills grew by over 160 percent in just 12 weeks, the company’s digital assistant skills have increased from 67 to 174 in around 2 and half months. On the other hand, Amazon Alexa has over 17,650 while Google Assistant has 468. Microsoft is lagging far behind Amazon and Alexa when it comes to digital assistant skills but it is however slowly catching up.
As the new Harman Kardon Invoke speakers are available, Microsoft is also expecting Cortana popularity to gain a strong momentum. In the coming months, Microsoft will be adding new features to Cortana on Windows 10 and other platforms such as the Collections feature that lets you organise the list of your favorites in one place. If Microsoft continues to improve Cortana, that the day isn’t far away when Cortana will surpass Google Assistant skills.