Microsoft's Cortana is coming to Android and iOS
According to Reuters Microsoft is going to bring their digital assistant Cortana to Android and iOS. As much as I like a less personal assistance of Google Now I like the idea of competition.
Cortana is somewhat of a cross over between Google Now and Siri. I don't think MS should have delusions on iOS. There are probably some die hard HALO fans who will replace Siri with Cortana just for that reason. But I don't think Cortana will address a broader audience on Apple devices. iPhone users are a special bunch and Cortana doesn't really bring much new to the platform. Personally I think it's better than Siri but that's my opinion. Both have some strengths and weaknesses.
On Android however Microsoft could actually come up with an alternative to Now. While Now is an excellent tool and in my opinion the best of the three it is not a personal assistant in a closer sense. Device integration works better on Siri and Cortana if you have to interact with it. That's not really a strength of Google Now even though it has become significantly better. I prefer my phone quiet. And that's what Now does best. When it's working in the background without direct interaction. When you're not used to it knowing it Now can actually surprise the shit out of you until or unless you remember why it knows it. And Now is the much better search tool. But I don't use it as such that often.
Cortana is a different approach and that might appeal to some users more than the Google Now approach. In contrast to iOS's Siri Cortana is a real alternative on Android as It's different from Now. Plus it's Cortana from HALO. I'm a total HALO illiterate but I know that the brand has some serious weight and reach. It's why Microsoft picked it up in the first place.
I'm curious to see how that will play out for Microsoft. As I said above. I'm pretty certain it's going to be better on Android than on iOS. That's unless Microsoft fucks it up.