Microsoft’s Cortana personal assistant could soon be integrated into Android, if Cyanogen gets its way.
Cortana is available on Android as an app, but Cyanogen wants it to be deeply integrated, and serve as a rival to Google’s voice search.
Cyanogen is the company behind Cyanogen OS, a forked version of Android that gives more customisation for power users. It’s been relatively niche, but came as the default OS on last year’s OnePlus One, and the more recent OnePlus 2.
So why Cortana? Cyanogen is already in bed with Microsoft, as its Office apps come preinstalled on Cyanogen OS. Now it wants to snuggle up to Microsoft even more by bringing Cortana to the party.
Cyanogen CEO Kirt McMaster told International Business Times (via Gizmodo): “When Apple launched Apple Music at WWDC, they showed the Siri integration with Apple Music. Siri doesn’t power Spotify like that so we can do all these kind of things with for example, integration of Microsoft’s Cortana into the OS enabling natural language to power Spotify and other services.”
Having voice control over Spotify and other third-party services would be a real killer feature, and something that Google and Apple lack at the moment. Though Google and Apple’s voice-activated personal assistants have one power Cortana lacks – the ability to be always-on. Apple launched the service last week on the iPhone 6S and 6S Plus. Google has had it since last year’s Moto X.
McMaster didn’t say when Cortana would be integrated into Cyanogen OS.