Cortana, Microsoft’s personal assistant, is already on her way to Windows 10 but she’s also going to be available on platforms outside of Microsoft’s own ecosystem very soon.
Reuters reports that Cortana will be available as a standalone application on iOS and Android in the future. The news outlet cites people familiar with the project that say this will happen after Cortana arrives on desktop Windows machines later this year.
Windows 10 users can look forward to an advanced version of Cortana when the OS launches closer to the end of 2015. Speaking to Eric Horvitz, managing director of Microsoft Research, Reuters reports that the company’s new version of Cortana is internally referred to as Einstein. A glimpse of Cortana’s future is hidden in the name of the project.
Horvitz revealed that Cortana’s success will be knowing where the user is, what time it is, and what he or she is trying to do. That way, Cortana can offer helpful information based on the relationship she has identified between the user’s location and time. “Einstein was brilliant about space and time,” he said. “It’s using brilliance about space and time generally in our agents.”
Microsoft has been working hard to bring matching versions of its productivity apps to all platforms, and most recently released Outlook for iOS and Android, but Cortana is surprising. CEO Satya Nadella promised a mobile-first, cloud-first company last year and it looks like Microsoft no longer sees the benefit of keeping select mobile apps as ‘Microsoft-only.’