Amazon’s Alexa will soon be talking to Microsoft’s Cortana

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Families are about to hear more chatter in the house — from their gadgets talking to each other.

By the end of this year, Amazon’s Alexa voice-activated assistant will be able to speak with Microsoft’s rival Cortana assistant, the tech giants announced Wednesday.

By simply saying, “Alexa, open Cortana,” an Amazon Echo owner will be able to tap into information stored on their Windows 10 PC — or vice versa.

“There are going to be multiple successful intelligent agents, each with access to different sets of data and with different specialized skill areas,” Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos said in Wednesday’s statement.

While Alexa and Cortana have many overlapping functions, Amazon’s Echo speakers are better known for media streaming while Microsoft’s Cortana performs more scheduling and business-oriented tasks.

“Ensuring Cortana is available for our customers everywhere and across any device is a key priority for us,” Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella said.

An estimated 35.6 million Americans — more than ten percent of the US population — use voice-activated assistants, according to a May 2017 report by eMarketer. That figure also includes Apple’s Siri assistant and is expected to grow.

Not to be outdone by its Seattle, Wa.-based rivals, Silicon Valley-based Google said Wednesday its own voice-activated assistant will soon be ready to use on a slew of third-party speakers, as well as appliances like refrigerators.

The search giant, which made its announcement at a trade show in Germany, said that Google Assistant will soon be available on the following speaker brands: Zolo Mojo by Anker, TicHome Mini by Mobvoi and the GA10 by Panasonic. It also hinted at a partnership with LG appliances.

Click to view the original article on the New York Post.

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