Cortana “died” on iOS and Android. Siri no longer has a female voice by default on iPhone – Apps

As announced last year, Microsoft has discontinued its smart assistant on iOS and Android versions. At the time, as it continues to be the center of experiments managed by artificial intelligence, especially around Microsoft 365, the manufacturer says that it needed to adjust its focus on the areas of innovation and development, where they are most needed. Thus, the technology ended the support of the functionalities with less use, as is the case of the assistant in the form of an application.

Even so, it is possible to use Cortana in an integrated way in several productivity tools of the company, such as managing the calendar and email, participating in meetings, from Cortana Windows 10, integration in Outlook or the voice assistant of the app Teams. But the app has stopped working since yesterday, March 31, according to Microsoft’s note.

There are also changes to Apple’s Siri wizard. Responding to the constant criticism of sexism regarding the default voices of Siri, Cortana, Alexa and Google Assistent, Apple will make changes to its assistant. Siri will no longer be “female” by default in an upcoming update, with additional male voices (for now in English) being introduced for the user to choose in the initial system configuration. The criticisms came in a United Nations notification, in which the unique use of the female voice helped to create the stereotype of the role of women as assistants, in a supportive and secondary role.

According to CNBC, in the iOS 14.5 update scheduled to arrive during the spring, users will be approached to choose their favorite voice among four choices, thus not having the female by default. The beta of this version, which started to circulate this Wednesday, already allows to test the functionality.

In a statement, Apple says that this change continues the company’s commitment to diversity and inclusion, with products and services to be designed to better reflect these options in the world in which we live.

Other new features in iOS 14.5 include the possibility of unlocking an iPhone through Apple Watch, the introduction of new emojis, including one that represents a vaccine (alluding to the vaccination of COVID-19), as well as changes in privacy restricting access to ID of equipment by mobile advertisers.

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