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New Beta Version of Cortana Hits Android

Feb 22, 2017

Good news if you are part of the Android beta program for Microsoft Cortana as the app just got another beta test update. Microsoft Cortana just put out a new beta version of the popular digital assistant, and it will allow you to enable Cortana on the lock screen.

Cortana on Android Gets New Beta Release

The Microsoft Cortana digital assistant app is getting another cool beta update, which is open right now if you are part of the beta program for Cortana. In this new beta update for Cortana, you now will have the ability to enable Cortana on your lock screen. This means that you will have the shortcut for Microsoft Cortana right there on your lock screen, just like you do for your camera app. This will allow you to use Cortana right there without having to unlock your device and open up the app.

This new shortcut will work regardless of whether or not you type in your password or even know the password for that Android device. As long as you enable Cortana on your lock screen, anyone who uses your phone will be able to use this new shortcut feature. Microsoft is looking to bring Cortana to the front and center of Android, especially as the company is struggling with Windows and the Windows smartphone markets.

Microsoft has been making a ton of apps available for both iOS and Android within the past year, and this is just another way the company is trying to get the Cortana digital assistant to become a household name. By making Cortana available on the lock screen, Microsoft hopes people will just click Cortana if they need a digital assistant while on the go, instead of using the digital assistant from Google.

While this new beta update brings Cortana to the lock screen, it is not clear whether or not this will be enough to get people to switch from the Google assistant. That is in part because the Google AI is so integrated into the Android operating system that it is hard to separate the artificial intelligence digital assistant from the device itself. People will be able to use Cortana as they normally would, and some might prefer to use Cortana over Google’s version of the digital assistant. People also will be able to integrate Cortana on Android with their regular home computers, so there is definitely a few advantages here of using Cortana over the digital assistant Google has on Android by default. Plus, if you are looking for another digital assistant, at least you know that Cortana is pretty good and worth a shot.

The good news here is that by having Cortana front and center on the lock screen, you will be able to access it much quicker than before. That means anytime you need information you do not even have to worry about unlocking your device. If you are part of the Microsoft Cortana beta program on Android, you should see this update coming to your Android device within the next day or two. If you have over-the-air updates enabled then it likely will hit your device automatically without you needing to download the app from Google Play Store. Remember that because this is a beta update, there might be some glitches and other issues that could impact the performance of the app and could result in some instability on your Android device.