Microsoft has a master plan with its Cortana digital assistant and Windows 10

Cortana from halo
Cortana of the ‘Halo’ video game series is the basis for Windows 10’s Cortana. Halo

Microsoft is working on putting Cortana, its Siri-like personal digital assistant, anywhere and everywhere within Windows 10, reports The Verge.

Right now, in Windows 10 as it stands today, Cortana sits comfortably in her corner near the Start menu.

But with Windows 10 Redstone, the big update to the operating system coming some time next summer, Cortana will leave her box and “float around Windows 10,” according to the report.

The idea is that Cortana would hover around the edges of, say, a Microsoft Word document or an Outlook email, offering contextual search information — sort of like the “Research” feature in Google Docs on Android, only on the Windows 10 desktop.

It also sounds a little bit like Microsoft’s much-maligned Clippy assistant from the nineties, as noted by the report, but it sounds like Cortana will be a little bit less annoyingly intrusive.

Other new Cortana-centric features in Windows 10 Redstone will include a new ability to index Office 365 documents, so she can find the files you’re looking for, and contextual search for Cortana on Windows 10 Mobile that works like Google’s new Now On Tap feature on Android.

It’s not a surprise, whatsoever, that Microsoft is focusing so heavily on Cortana with future Windows 10 updates.

Cortana is a major strategic push for Microsoft, coming straight from CEO Satya Nadella: He recently said that he sees virtual digital assistants like Cortana eventually replacing the web browser entirely.

And so building Cortana into everything, everywhere just makes sense — Microsoft wants to make sure Cortana is always front-and-center. In fact, just this week, Microsoft released Cortana apps for iOS and Android, extending the app’s reach to the stars above.

It also doesn’t hurt that Cortana seems to be driving some ad revenue via the Bing search engine.

We’ve reached out to Microsoft for comment and will update when we hear back.

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