Cortana finally getting its own hardware home

It’s Invoke with Cortana
Image: Microsoft

Microsoft is ultimately passing Cortana its own hardware home.

Okay, it’s not Microsoft precisely, but Harman Kardon’s Invoke, announced Monday and coming this fall, be the first time that stand-alone hardware devoted to the Microsoft’s chatty AI. And it looks like Amazon Echo’s conical cousin, right down to the volume dial on top.

Like the Echo, Harman Kardon’s Invoke is a loudspeaker, but owing to Harman’s audiophile roots, it raises the aural bet, including 3 woofers and three tweeters. The combining provides what Harmon calls 360 -degree sound.

Cortana, though, is the starring here. The voice aide will be backed by a seven-microphone array, along with echo- and noise-cancellation engineering all of which should help Cortana hear you better when “theyre saying”, “Hey, Cortana, what’s the climate? “

There isn’t a lot of detail on the Harman Kardon website or Microsoft’s blog post, but both promise music power( for select music services that Microsoft does not roll) and the ability to control Smart Home devices.

Invoke’s version of Cortana is of course the same digital aide on your PCs, iOS and Android apps, supplied you’ve signed in with the same Microsoft user account.

The arrival of Invoke this fall could recognize a turning point for Microsoft Cortana, the mostly Windows 10 -bound voice assistant that’s primarily used as text-based hunting( almost no one is talking to their PCs ). Thanks to the popularity of Amazon Echo and Alexa, people are already comfortable talking to an attractive device that sits in their kitchen, living room or bedroom. Like Google Home, Cortana is backed by a powerful search engine in such a case Bing so it may know more than Alexa, which are frequently gets basic questions wrong.

What you tell Cortana through Invoke will show up on your other Windows devices.

Image: Microsoft

There’s a spin here, though. Harman Kardon is a wholly owned subsidiary of Samsung, the same corporation that merely launched Bixby, its own digital aide. Of course, Bixby is more concerned with controlling features and suffers on Samsung devices and not being an in-house know-it-all. Perhaps Microsoft’s decision to go with Harman Kardon for Invoke is just an indication that this will be the first of many Cortana hardware partnerships, ones that we may providing information about the coming week at Microsoft’s Build Developer’s Conference in Seattle.

Pricing for Invoke hasn’t been determined, but you can register on the locate to get notified when the device is available.

Bonus Video: Cortana is now part of Windows 10 setup

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