Microsoft has announced it will stop supporting the popular Cortana voice assistant and focus on its existing desktop-only Cortana, instead.
The move to a mobile-first approach to voice assistant was first revealed in December.
Cortana is now a completely separate app, rather than part of Microsoft’s existing desktop experience.
Microsoft said that it would also move away from its traditional voice-based voice search service Cortana, and would focus instead on the Cortana search app.
A spokesperson told TechRadars the decision to switch to mobile-focused Cortana was prompted by the need to address user needs across multiple devices, and not a direct response to users complaints about the service’s performance.
“We’ve been listening to the feedback, and we’re making this change to better align with our customers’ needs, and as a result, Cortana will be discontinued on February 13,” the spokesperson said.
The spokesperson also added that Cortana will continue to work on Windows Phones, but that Microsoft is moving away from it, saying that it has no plans to continue supporting it. “
As a result of this change, we will no longer support Cortana on Windows 10, Windows Phone 8.1, or Windows Phone 7.1 devices.”
The spokesperson also added that Cortana will continue to work on Windows Phones, but that Microsoft is moving away from it, saying that it has no plans to continue supporting it.
The spokesperson did not offer any more details about when Cortana would be discontinued, but the spokesperson did say that the company will “continue to improve Cortana across the next few years”.
The move follows Microsoft’s decision to make Cortana the default voice search on the Windows 10 operating system, following Microsoft’s announcement that it was removing support for the Cortana voice search app from Windows 10 devices.
Microsoft said at the time that it planned to move away “from our traditional voice search experience” to a “more personal, intelligent voice assistant”, and that the move was to address customer feedback about Cortana’s performance and reliability.
As well as being a separate app that works across different devices, Cortana now also works on the web, through Cortana’s own app store, and on Microsoft’s Windows 10 app store.
“Cortia is part of our Cortana experience, and Cortana’s search will continue,” the Microsoft spokesperson said, adding that the decision was driven by the “need to align with the experiences customers want and deserve”.
Cue is Microsoft’s new voice assistant on the desktop that allows users to type commands, and is currently available on Windows and Macs, as well as Windows Phone and Xbox One.
It is also available on Apple’s iOS, Android and Windows Phone.
Cue, which is available for free to developers, is also supported by Microsoft’s Bing search engine.
The spokesperson added that Bing searches are not the same as Siri, the default search option on iOS, Windows, Android, and Windows 10 PCs.
“Instead, Bing searches will be personalized to you based on your specific needs and your personal search history,” the company said.
“With Bing, you can create custom searches to match your preferences, and you can even search on things you love.”
The spokesperson did, however, state that Cortana search will remain free to use for “developers, and that it will continue working on new features, and the search experience on Bing, to help developers build better experiences for Windows 10.”
Microsoft also confirmed that Cortana’s voice search is now available on Google’s search engine, meaning it is available on a wide variety of devices.
This comes just months after Microsoft announced Cortana will no long be able to work in conjunction with Windows 10’s built-in search, following a number of complaints from users.
Microsoft’s decision follows a number complaints from Windows users who claim that Cortana is not working properly on the platform, and does not work at all in Windows 10.