Microsoft and Amazon show Alexa-Cortana integrations for first time

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Now if you have a Pixel 2 smartphone, the good news is that you can make Amazon's own Alexa as your default voice assistant.

After announcing the Alexa and Cortana integration previous year, Microsoft's Cortana will finally include access to Amazon's digital assistant and at the Microsoft Build 2018, the software maker went on with demonstrated Alexa running on Cortana and vice versa. It's worth noting that some smartphones, such as the Huawei Mate 9, did come with Alexa integration in the past.

"We want to make it possible for our customers to get the most out of their personal assistants, not be bound to a single one", Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella said at Build. Details of the partnership were spelled out a bit more, but it's still in its early days as neither company was ready to announce a concrete release time. Cortana is just another skill. There are a lot of things that Cortana can do and Alexa can't. In smartphones, Google enjoys an advantage as Google Assistant is pre-installed on Android smartphones as the successor to Google Now and Voice Search. "How can I help?" In a demonstration, Cortana executive Megan Saunders used Alexa to order milk and then had the assistant wake Cortana to check her schedule and send email. The voice changed to Alexa and Taylor ordered an Uber to get to the restaurant. "We both have experience with rings, although hers is more of a Halo".

I'd imagine there are a few of you out there who purchased a bunch of Amazon Echo devices out of the gate instead of Google Home, since Echo had such a head start on Google's smart speakers.

The new integration is going to be available as part of a limited beta, with Microsoft encouraging interested parties to register their interest here.

Either way you choose to access your settings, you will see a list of available assistants.

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