Now Cortana Can Configure Itself as the Default Assistant on Android

Posted on June 18, 2017 by Paul Thurrott in Android, Mobile with 17 Comments

Now Cortana Can Configure Itself as the Default Assistant on Android

You’ve been able to configure the default assistant in Android as Cortana for quite some time, but the option is hard to find. Now, the latest version of Cortana will simply make this change for you if you’d like.

I’ve written about and discussed this capability many times, and perhaps most recently in Android for the Windows Guy: Redmondize Your Smartphone. What you’ve needed to do, to date, was open Settings, search for “Assist & voice input,” and then change the Assist app to Cortana.

Now, you will apparently be prompted to choose between “Google” and “Cortana” when you long-press the Android home button for the first time after updating to the new version of the Cortana app. (This shortcut is the primary way to launch the assistant on Android.)

I write “apparently” there because I don’t see this prompt on the Pixel XL. That is most likely because I am using a pre-release Android 8.0 (“O”) version. But the method noted above still works, so I suspect that it will work on this device, and with this Android OS version, soon.)

Even with this nicety, Cortana is still missing a much-needed feature that would make it truly integrated with Android and useful to all: The ability to enable “Hey, Cortana.” Maybe that will arrive in a future update.

Also, if you make the change to Cortana and later wish to switch back to Google, you can do so in Settings, as described above.

You can download Cortana for Android from the Google Play Store.


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