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Microsoft Discontinues Cortana App on Windows 11

Microsoft Discontinues Cortana App on Windows 11

Microsoft has discontinued its Cortana app for Windows 11. Three years after Microsoft shut down its Cortana apps for iOS and Android, a new update is being released for Cortana that disables the digital assistant.

If you try to launch Cortana on Windows 11, you'll now get a notification saying the app has been disallowed and a link to a support article on the change. Microsoft now plans to end support for Cortana in Teams mobile, Microsoft Teams display, and Microsoft Teams rooms "in late 2023". Amazingly, according to Microsoft, Cortana will "remain available" inside Outlook Mobile.

Cortana originally started its life as a digital assistant in Windows Phone, before Microsoft added the assistant to Windows 10 in 2015. It was deeply integrated into the Windows 10 taskbar with support for voice commands, reminders, and the ability to open applications. Microsoft then removed Cortana from the Windows 11 taskbar and first boot experience, but retained the standalone app until this week.

Ultimately, despite major redesigns for iOS and Android, Cortana struggled to compete with rivals such as Alexa or the Google Assistant. Cortana's fate was largely tied to Microsoft's failures with Windows Phone, and Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella admitted in 2019 that Cortana lagged behind competitors.

Microsoft is now working on Windows Copilot, a new sidebar for Windows 11 that is powered by Bing Chat and can control Windows settings, answer questions and more. Windows CoPilot is expected to be available this autumn as part of a Windows 11 update that will also include native RAR and 7-Zip support.

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