Cortana VS Siri: Choosing The Best Digital Assistant

December 31, 2015

With the advancements in technology that have been made over recent years, our lives have been revolutionised in a range of ways. Mobile devices such as smartphones have come a really long way over the past few years and this has enabled us to use them for far more than just the basic tasks that the mobile phones of a bygone era were once used for. While we once used phones for simply texting and making calls these days we use them for all sorts of things from taking photos and enjoying entertainment through to organising our lives thanks to features such as digital assistants.

When it comes to digital assistants on mobiles there are a number of options. As is often the case with mobile technology, Apple led the way with its Siri digital assistant but since then others have followed suit with similar features including Microsoft, which recently released Windows 10 along with some new features which included the Cortana digital assistant. The new Cortana digital assistant is quite quirky in its own way and users have reported that it is also quite speedy in terms of the responses that it gives. In addition it even cracks the odd joke about rival digital assistant Siri amongst other things.

Of course, while having your digital assistance make jokes is great the one thing that people want from their digital assistant is a quick and accurate response, so which of these two digital assistants is going to make the grade when it comes to user satisfaction?

Cortana Windows

About Cortana

Many people believe that in the creation of the Cortana digital assistant, Microsoft has taken some of the key features from Apple’s Siri and the Google Now digital assistant in order to create an assistance that has both personality and speedy responses. The system offers a range of different features that users will find useful such as being able to block calls and notifications at set times but also being able to select exceptions in case you are waiting on an urgent call for a specific person. You can set it so that if someone calls again within a few minutes it lets the call or notification through, as it classes it as a possible emergency.

Another great thing about Cortana is that it can identify the names of songs that you hear while out and about in shops or eateries. Many of us have had that annoying moment where we hear a song and although we know it or like it we just cannot determine who it is. Your Cortana digital assistance could make this a thing of the past without the need for separate apps.

A number of key differences have been identified between Cortana and Siri. Some of these include:

  • The fact that Cortana can avoid mistakes by asking to determine what you want rather than making assumptions.
  • With Cortana you can ask questions as a follow up to your original one whereas with Siri it seems that when you ask a follow up question it is treated as a totally new one in some cases.
  • You can benefit from more methods of setting reminders with Cortana, such as people based reminders so that your assistant reminds you of something you need to tell someone when you next call or text them.

These enhanced features coupled with pretty impressive response times and that amusing ‘personality’ makes Cortana a good option for those who want the benefits of a digital assistant.

Siri Apple

About Siri 

Siri from Apple has been around much longer than Cortana, which means that it had seen a range of advancements over time. Like Cortana, Siri does have a fun personality and can cheer you up with amusing responses. It has also become far speedier at giving responses since its development and Apple has continued to make advancements to the Siri feature on its newer devices. For instance, there are now various ways in which you can ask Siri a question, which includes:

  • Holding down the home button until Siri asks what you need help with and then asking your question.
  • Plugging in your phone and stating ‘Her Siri’ and then asking your question.
  • Using a headset with a remote in your car and then holding down the central button. Once you hear a chime you can ask your question.

It is also worth noting that with the iPhone 6S and 6S Plus you don’t have to plug your device in, as the Siri feature is always on so all you need to do is say ‘Hey Siri’ and then ask away. Apart from the various ways of using it, Siri offers similar features to those found on Cortana, although the reminder features and options are not as comprehensive. You can change the voice or language of this digital assistant and this means that you can use it in any country where the language spoken is supported by Siri.