Microsoft is working on a new Cortana integration for Outlook on mobile devices. The personal assistant will soon be able to read your email out to you, reports Windows Central.
The company is currently testing the feature on an internal version of Outlook’s iOS app. The feature will essentially allow you to listen to Cortana read your inbox out to you while you are driving, for example. Outlook intelligently surfaces the feature on the app when it detects you are connected to an external speaker or bluetooth headphones, giving you an indication of how long Cortana will take to read your emails.
When you let Cortana start reading your email out loud, you will be able to skip through emails much like a music playback UI, and Cortana also lets you take actions with each email, like being able to flag it, delete it, or reply to the email. There doesn’t seem to be an option to speed up Cortana’s voice, though.
Of course, having your email read out loud sounds like a disastrous idea because of all the formatting and other, unnecessary details that are included in emails nowadays. However, it seems like Cortana will be able to essentially take out the important info out of your email, avoiding all the unnecessary details, which sounds pretty clever. For when there’s a lot of formatting or visuals, Cortana will simply recommend you to check out the actual email on your phone.
This feature, combined with the upcoming Microsoft To-Do integration on Cortana, will hopefully restore the faith of those who were left wondering whether Microsoft’s going to slowly kill Cortana. Either way, Microsoft will likely roll the feature to Outlook users in the coming weeks or months, so keep an eye out for it.