To compete with Apple's Siri and Android's Google Now voice assistant app, Microsoft announced its own version called Cortana in May. While it is set to release sometime this month, a beta version of the Cortana for Android app has made its way onto the internet a little earlier than expected. Microsoft believes the leak may have originated from one of the beta testers invited from China or the US.
In some cases, only a bunch of screenshots get leaked to the public. Unfortunately, this isn’t the case for Microsoft’s Cortana for Android. The actual .APK file has leaked and is available for download by anyone with an Android device.
If you’re already familiar with Cortana’s Windows Phone or Windows 10 versions, you won’t be in for much of a surprise. Cortana for Android appears to have all the same features, except for the spoken ‘Hey Cortana’ function to open up the app. Instead, you’ll have to open the app from the screen.
Once the app is open, you’ll be directed to a dark themed interface with a white area for its content. Using your voice, you can ask Cortana to make searches for you, create reminders, send out emails, and even have her sing ‘Happy Birthday.’ The voice assistant app also has a Notebook, where information about its user is stored. This is something that’s not available on other voice assistant apps.
Considering this is a beta version of the app, it still needs some polishing up and finishing specific features. Hopefully, Microsoft will work on these issues before the official launch of Cortana for Android will be made available. By making Cortana available to rival platforms, Microsoft hopes to gain more users to its native services. An iOS version of the voice assistant app is projected to be released later this year.