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Microsoft shuts down the Cortana app on Android and iOS

You'll have to turn to other apps and platforms to use the voice assistant.

Published onMarch 31, 2021

  • Microsoft has shut down the Cortana app for Android and iOS as of March 31, 2020.
  • You’ll have to access your reminders and lists through Windows or the To Do app.
  • The move takes one more voice assistant out of competition on mobile.

You now have one less choice for major voice assistants on your phone. MacRumors reports that Microsoft has shut down the Cortana app for Android and iOS about two and a half years after its November 2018 launch.

Any content you created using Cortana has stopped functioning in the app, including lists and reminders. You’ll have to use either Cortana on Windows or the To Do app on Android and iOS to fetch your information.

Related: The best to do list apps for Android

The end had been coming for a while. Microsoft warned it would shut down Cortana for Android and iOS in July 2020, when it said it would shift the focus of the Halo-inspired AI assistant to helping users with Microsoft 365 services.  Harman Kardon even started removing Cortana from its Invoke smart speaker, a showcase for Microsoft’s helper, earlier this March.

It’s an unfortunate loss if you’re steeped in the Microsoft ecosystem. At the same time, it’s an acknowledgment that Cortana never really took off on mobile due to established, easier-to-reach competition. Android users had little reason to pick Cortana when Google Assistant was built-in, while iOS fans were more likely to use Siri. And if you wanted a device-independent alternative, you probably went with Amazon Alexa — Microsoft even forged a partnership to integrate Alexa with Windows 10. There just wasn’t much demand for Cortana, and it wouldn’t be surprising if Microsoft couldn’t justify maintaining the mobile apps.