Microsoft's Cortana, the Windows Phone Answer to Siri, Has Been Captured on Video [Video]
Microsoft has been developing its own voice recognition software Siri-alternative for a while now. It's named Cortana after the Halo franchise's AI companion, and so far all we've seen are pictures of the software.
Now, a video has surfaced from Unleash the Phones and it finally shows footage of Cortana's setup and functionality, though unfortunately it doesn't include her speaking or helping with a query. It looks like you'll need to sign in to your Microsoft account for her to work, but that's not too surprising given you're already using a Windows phone.
Cortana wants to ask a few questions during setup so she can get to know you and better tailor things to your personal preferences. While it's first setting up it asks you to briefly wait, humorously stating that it is "absorbing the entire internet."
It asks a few questions to customize the experience such as "what name would you like me to call you?", another feature similar to Siri. It also asks "What are a couple of the most enjoyable parts of your everyday evenings?" and offers several options to choose from. My guess is that it would offer news or information suggestions on topics you're interested in if you select them, and it stores all of these preferences in its Notebook.
There's a pleasant colored circle present and moving while you use Cortana, giving you the feeling something is there listening to you. The person in the video brings up the voice prompt, but stops short of asking a question and getting a response (likely because he is not allowed). I suppose we'll have to wait a bit longer to hear her speak: Microsoft is scheduled to show off Cortana at its Build conference in April.