The recent SMX Conference this week was mainly all about search engine marketing, but two of Microsoft’s key executives took the stage to talk about Cortana. What they said about Cortana shares a little insight into the program, and possibly about its future expansion.
During the SMX Conference, Microsoft’s Marcus Ash, a Windows Phone Group Program Manager, and Rob Chambers, a Group Program Manager took the stage of the show. They spoke with Danny Sullivan at the show, and talked about Cortana’s scalability and its future with Microsoft.
How Can Cortana Scale
With the initial rollout of Cortana, Microsoft is limiting it to only Windows Phone 8.1 developer preview releases. It’s initially setup in a US settings mode, but Cortana is looking to be expanded later this year in the UK, US, and throughout China. In China, Cortana is looking to talk a more female take too.
But, the biggest news about Cortana was about their talk about expansion. They posed a Android or iOS expansion as interesting, and said that their main goal is to get it working great on Windows Phone devices first. A talk about moving Cortana into cars, desktop computers, and other venues was mentioned as well.
Cortana’s Ad Could Be Coming
The other major talk about Cortana during this SMX show was about ads with Cortana. The two talked about wanting to nail down the Cortana experience, but the commercial opportunities of the Cortana system were certainly apparent. The first year will be about getting it out and worked on, with ads in the future.
Cortana’s effect on search was the final part of the discussion, but Microsoft stated that its not the end of searching on the web, or the search box. It’s a brand new way to search on the web, it can make the web much better, and makes users more likely to search than ever before. Cortana is an extension of search according to the two, and Cortana’s future sounded very bright during their SMX talk this week. How users adopt it though, will be an interesting thing as it rolls out in 2014.
Cortana is a brand new technology, and it will battle Siri and Google Now. Microsoft needs to nail it well, and make users want to use it ASAP.