Microsoft’s digital personal assistant just keeps getting better: this week, the software giant announced that it has added instant language translation capabilities to Cortana in Windows 10 in the US and China. So let’s see how it works.
This functionality comes via Microsoft Translate, which is also available in integrated form in products like Microsoft Office and Skype Translator as well as some Microsoft mobile apps. And it will presumably be expanded to other Windows 10 markets, as well as Cortana on Windows phones.
In its current form on Windows 10, Cortana can translate words, phrases, and sentences from English or Chinese to almost 40 other languages. And you can of course use voice control—via “Hey Cortana,”—or simply type your query.
To test this, I tried a few basic terms in Spanish, which I’m trying to learn with Duolingo.
For example: “How do you say ‘show’ in Spanish?” To which Cortana replies, “Here’s how to say ‘show’ in Spanish.” (And answers correctly.)
Or perhaps a more complex sentence, like “I would like to see you tomorrow.”
Looking good. Obviously, this kind of thing would be more useful on a phone. So I assume we’ll be seeing this in Windows 10 Mobile soon as well. (Until then, you can try the Translator app for Windows phone.)