If you’ve used Windows 10 and haven’t started using Cortana yet, you might be interested in giving it a try. It’s essentially Microsoft’s version of Siri and Google Assistant, but it’s integrated right into Windows.
You can ask Cortana questions, and this can help you work on your computer. With every update, Microsoft is adding new features and options to Cortana, which makes it somewhat useful. Since I sit at the computer most of the day, I’m used to asking Cortana random things.
In this article, I’ll show you how you can turn on Cortana and perform some of the more useful tasks it can do for you. Compared to Google and Siri, Cortana is still slightly behind, but catching up quickly.
How to enable Cortana
Cortana is mostly found in the small search box to the right of the Start button. If you click the button inside the search box, you will see the settings icon on the left. If you click on it, you can manage all the settings related to Cortana.
The first option at the top, Microphone, is the first step to using Cortana. If your computer doesn’t have a microphone, you can still use Cortana, but without voice control, it isn’t nearly as useful.
If you click Start, it will try to detect your microphone and then use the wizard to check the volume and make sure the microphone is working properly. Once you have done that, you can enable the other options listed. The first one is Hello Cortana, it will let you just say Hello Cortana and then start asking a question. Pretty much the same as “Hello Siri”.
When you activate this feature, you will be prompted to turn on speech recognition and your voice input will be sent to Microsoft to improve their speech systems. Obviously, if you don’t like your voice commands being sent to Microsoft, you can simply choose â€œMaybe Later.â€ You definitely give up privacy when you turn on Cortana because she wants access to your voice history, location, email, calendar, and more. You can turn them on and off individually, and I’ll show you how.
After you enable an option, it will usually show you more related options. For example, the default “Hey Cortana” feature prevents your computer from going to sleep so it can hear you say these words whenever you want. He can also reply to anyone or try to reply only to you. When you turn on the screen lock option, it will give you Cortana prompts even when your device is locked. By default, it grants itself access to your calendar, emails, and other data when your device is locked. You can uncheck this box if you like.
Scrolling down to see more options. You can enable a keyboard shortcut to access Cortana instead of saying Hey Cortana. You can also download Cortana to your Android or iOS device and sync notifications between devices.
At the bottom, you can also choose whether to include device history and search history. Obviously this will keep track of all your searches and so on, so switch them based on your privacy tolerance.
Next, you need to check your permissions. To do this, click on the small notebook icon under the Home button. You will see a list of items such as “About Me”, “Lists”, “Reminders”, “Connected Services”, etc.
You can set all of these other options later, but first click on Permissions. Here you can enable or disable permissions for location, contacts / email / calendar, and browsing history.
The bottom also explains how to clear all of this data if you ever want to get rid of it. If you don’t turn on location detection, Cortana won’t work. I had to turn it on to fill the home screen. At this point, you should review all the items listed in the notebook and adjust the settings.
The home screen will be loaded with popular stories, top news, local weather, and tips and tricks. I suggest scrolling down to Tips & Tricks and clicking on More Tips. This will give you a good idea of ??all the possibilities Cortana has to offer.
The most useful things for me were lists, reminders and setting alarms. If you use Spotify for your music, you can use Cortana to play songs, which is really nice. Also, like Amazon Alexa, Cortana supports third-party skills They currently support about 45 skills that you can tap into and use.
Once you start using Cortana, the search box will appear full screen and give you full screen results. Overall, if you sit in front of your computer a lot, Cortana becomes very comfortable. I stopped using Siri because I usually donâ€™t like talking to my phone when Iâ€™m not at home, but my computer is always used at home, and that saves the inconvenience. Try it and see what you think. You can always turn it off later. Enjoy!