Microsoft’s Invoke speaker plan is likely to provoke the most outrage. The company will push a firmware update on the smart device to turn it into a Bluetooth speaker. “The firmware update will be delivered automatically to WiFi-connected devices within six months of its release,” the company said.
As an olive branch of Invoke owners, Microsoft plans to send them gift cards for $ 50. To qualify, you will need to use your Invoke speaker to request something from Cortana between July 31
As mentioned above, Microsoft also plans to remove the current iteration of Cortana’s first-generation surface headphones in early 2021. Once the change passes, you’ll be able to use Digital Assistant, but only through the integration that comes with Outlook Mobile. Owners of first-generation surface headphones can receive a gift card for $ 25.
“We have spent a lot of time considering this transition and we understand that these changes can be devastating for some of our customers,” the company said.
Like The Verge points out, the changes mean another step in the transformation of Cortana as a performance-focused digital assistant. Cortana is not leaving, but Microsoft is tuning the software for better complimentary applications such as Outlook and Teams. In this way, the company probably hopes to raise a niche for the digital assistant away from the likes of Assistant and Alexa. Of course, all this is a small consolation if you have purchased the original vision of the company for Cortana.