We’ve put Apple’s Siri through the wringer, and have given Google Now an all-access pass to our data, all the while documenting our experiences to offer you the best tips and tricks out there for intelligent assistant apps. Now it’s Cortana’s turn. Cortana is Microsoft’s virtual assistant for smartphones, specifically phones running Windows 8.1. She’s named after a fictional AI character in Microsoft’s hugely popular Halo videogame series. In some ways, Cortana is a kind of combination of Siri and Google Now (with, arguably, more personality). She can perform task-based functions: She shows you your daily schedule, sets alarms and sends reminders. But Cortana also provides search-based information, courtesy of Bing. I’m going to go out on a limb here and say that the majority of you have never used Cortana, given that Windows Phone accounts for just 2.5 percent of mobile operating systems worldwide.

Read the full story at re/code.

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