Microsoft (Finally) Acknowledges Cortana Was Stupid, But Slaps Others Too

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Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella admitted in an interview that Cortana is dumb. But she not only criticizes her company’s voice assistant, since she also allows herself to hit the competition. A logical position, because Microsoft is now in the AI ​​race, especially with its investments in OpenAI.

« They were all as dumb as a stone. “: Satya Nadella doesn’t cross a line criticizing voice assistants. Whether it’s Alexa, the Google Assistant, Siri, and even Cortana, they all go through it. A position that is actually quite easy for Nadella and one that allows him to jumpstart future Microsoft projects related to artificial intelligence.

Voice assistants that didn’t work, Cortana at the front of the gondola

It is in the context of an interview granted to thefinancial timesthat Satya Nadella returned in 2016, when he was struggling to promote voice assistants and especially Cortana. A few years later, the result is mixed: almost half of our readers do not use a voice assistant on a daily basis (even if you are an audience that is especially sensitive to new technologies).

In addition, the British newspaper indicates in its article that it is returning to Amazon’s strategy, that it has relegated Alexa to the background and that it is trying to improve its monetization. Last November we learned of the layoff of thousands of employees: a massive layoff that affected the development of Alexa.

satya nadella
Satya Nadella, the patron of Microsoft // Source: Microsoft

For the CEO of Microsoft therefore, “whether it’s Cortana, Alexa, Google Assistant or Siri, they don’t work. We had a product that was supposed to be the new front-end [application avec laquelle on interagit directement] for many and that did not work».

Criticizing voice assistants: an easy position for Microsoft

At a time when, of course, the enthusiasm is less strong, but still present, for voice assistants, Google, Amazon and Apple continue to develop theirs. Microsoft preferred to abandon Cortana, leaving her stuck in Windows 10 and refusing to integrate her into Windows 11.

Easy enough for Microsoft to criticize voice assistants after the fact, when it failed to convince users. That also start from scratch thanks to its investment of billions of dollars in OpenAI and thanks to the launch of its AI-powered Bing.

What would happen if Microsoft were back on the market?

However, if Microsoft says that Cortana was stupid, it could come back even stronger and thus really outperform its competitors in the field of voice assistants. ChatGPT and Bing have demonstrated impressive capabilities, and while major flaws have yet to be fixed, one can dream of imagining truly intelligent voice assistants.

The new Bing // Source: Microsoft

Speech recognition and text-to-speech have worked well for years, but what voice assistants lack today is a “intelligenceartificial. Let’s hope anyway that it is not done under the name of Bingo, a name that had been considered to name Cortana.

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