Cortana – Part 3 – Talk To Cortana

We’ve looked at the recent changes to Cortana in two articles this week. Today, we’ll tackle talking to Cortana.

Click here to read Part 1.

Click here to read Part 2.

With the changes to Cortana in Windows 10 v 2004, there are also changes to communicating with Cortana. There’s even been a bit of a switch towards emphasizing typing over talking.

We’ll get started by opening Cortana.

At the top left of the app window, click on the three-dot menu icon.

Then select Settings.

This is where you can adjust speech, permissions, and privacy settings. Click on Talk to Cortana.

Your first option is whether or not you Cortana to respond to the wake word “Cortana.” If you turn it on, just say “Cortana go get a response.

Otherwise you must click the little microphone icon at the bottom of the app to get “her” attention.

When Cortana is ready to listen, you’ll hear a little chirping sound. Don’t start talking until you get that acknowledgment or she’ll miss part of what you say.

Click on Wake word to adjust those settings. The Voice Activation Settings for Windows 10 will open. Scroll all the way down to the bottom of the page to see the Cortana options.

You can choose whether or not you want Cortana to listen when you say her name and if you want her to talk to you when your device is locked.

Your other option is to decide what happens when you use the keyboard shortcut Windows Key + C. You can choose between immediately typing into Cortana’s search box or having the choice between speaking and typing.

What are some things you can ask Cortana to do?

Say “Cortana, open Edge” or “Open Excel” or “Open Calculator” to open an app.

You can ask Cortana to create a a reminder or an event.

Cortana can also look up stuff on the web, spell things, do math problems, and more. She’ll even tell you a joke.

One thing Cortana doesn’t do anymore is compose emails. I was surprised, so I contacted Microsoft to make sure. The feature has been disabled for the Windows Mail app and is now only available if you’re paying for Outlook in Office.

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