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How to Use Cortana in the Microsoft Edge Browser

How to Use Cortana in the Microsoft Edge Browser

Cortana, Microsoft's virtual assistant that is integrated with Windows 10, allows you to complete a wide range of tasks by typing or speaking user-friendly commands into your computer's microphone. From setting reminders in your calendar to getting the latest updates on your favorite sports team, Cortana acts as your own personal secretary. The digital helper also allows you to perform various functions within the Windows operating system, such as launching an application or sending an email.
Another benefit Cortana offers is the ability to interact with Microsoft Edge, allowing you to submit search queries, launch Web pages, and even send commands and ask questions without having to leave the current Web page; all thanks to Cortana's sidebar located within the browser itself.

Activating Cortana in Windows 

Before using Cortana in the Edge browser, it needs to be activated in the operating system. First click on the Windows search box, located in the lower left-hand corner of the screen and containing the following text: Search the web and Windows. When the search pop-out window appears, click on the Cortana icon, a white circle found in the lower left corner.
You will now be taken through the activation process. Since Cortana utilizes a lot of personal data, such as your location history and calendar details, you need to opt-in before continuing. Click on the Use Cortana button to move forward, or on the No thanks button if you are not comfortable with this. Once Cortana is activated, the text in the aforementioned search box will now read Ask me anything.

Voice Recognition 

While you can utilize Cortana by typing in the search box, its speech recognition functionality makes things even easier. There are two ways that you can submit verbal commands. The first method involves clicking on the microphone icon, located on the far right-hand side of the search box. Once selected the accompanying text should read Listening, at which point you can just speak whatever commands or search queries you wish to send to Cortana.
The second method is even simpler but needs to be enabled before it becomes accessible. First click on the circle button, now located on the left side of Cortana's search box. When the pop-out window appears, select the button that looks like a book with a circle on the cover -- located in the left menu pane directly below the house icon. Cortana's Notebook menu should now be displayed. Click on the Settings option.
Cortana's settings interface should now be visible. Locate the Hey Cortana option and click on its accompanying button to toggle this feature on. Once activated, you'll notice that you also have the ability to instruct Cortana to either respond to anyone or just to your individual voice. Now that you've enabled this feature, the voice-activated app will begin listening for your commands as soon as you speak the words "Hey Cortana".
to Use Cortana in the Microsoft Edge Browser.

Enabling Cortana to Work in the Edge Browser 

Now that you've activated Cortana in Windows, it's time to enable it within the browser. Click on the More actions button, represented by three dots and located in the upper right-hand corner of Edge's main window. When the drop-down menu appears, select the option labeled Settings. Edge's Settings interface should now be visible. Scroll down and select the View advanced settings button. Locate the Privacy and services section, which contains an option labeled Have Cortana assist me in Microsoft Edge. If the button accompanying this option says Off, click on it once to toggle it on. This step is not always necessary, as the feature may already be activated.

To delete search history stored in the cloud, take the following steps.

  1. Return to Cortana's Notebook settings interface by taking the steps shown above.
  2. Scroll to the bottom and click on Web search history settings.
  3. A log of your Cortana searches will now be displayed in the Edge browser, categorized by date and time. You may be prompted to sign in using your Microsoft credentials first. 
  4. To remove individual entries, click on the accompanying 'x' next to each one. To delete all Web searches stored on the dashboard, click on the Clear all button.

How to Use Cortana's Features in the Windows 10 Anniversary Update

It's Cortana time again. Cortana on Windows 10 is even better in the Windows 10 Anniversary Update. We've briefly talked about some of these features before, but now we're going to cover them in greater detail. We'll also talk about Cortana's basic interface.
to Use Cortana in the Microsoft Edge Browser.

The Cortana Panel 

As before you can activate Cortana by clicking on the text entry panel in the taskbar. If you feel like Cortana is taking up too much space on your desktop, right-click the taskbar, and select Cortana from the context menu.
Next, select Show Cortana icon and the digital assistant's size shrinks from a giant search box to a more manageable Cortana icon next to the Start button.
Once you click on the Cortana panel, you may notice that things have changed a bit in regards to interface with the Anniversary Update. If you ask me it's for the better. First off, getting to Cortana's settings is much easier than before since it's available in the lower left corner of the Cortana panel.
Click on it, however, and you're in for a surprise. There's no way to turn off Cortana in the Anniversary Update and just use a plain vanilla Windows search feature. If you really want to stop using Cortana you'll have to remove it from the taskbar by right-clicking on the taskbar and selecting Cortana > Hidden. After that you should also disable Cortana via the registry, which you can read about in more detail in this Cortana tutorial.
If you are using Cortana there are a few settings I would draw your attention to under Settings. You'll see a check box that says "Let Cortana access my calendar, email, messages, and Power BI data when my device is locked." This allows Cortana to, well, access your calendar, email, and messages (forget about Power BI unless you use it at work).
Cortana is designed to be more proactive and suggest things for you. Having access to calendar and email helps with that.
The next setting you should authorize is accessing Cortana from the lock screen. There's a slider under the heading "Lock screen" that says "Use Cortana even when my device is locked." That way you'll always have access. Of course, you'll also need to active the "Hey Cortana" voice command a little further up in settings as well.
Once that's done you can use Cortana for all kinds of things while on the lock screen. It can set a reminder or appointment for you, do a quick calculation, give you a basic fact, or send an SMS. The key point to remember here is that Cortana can do anything for you on the lock screen that doesn't require the personal digital assistant to open another program like, say, Microsoft Edge or Twitter.
Once it needs to do that, Cortana needs you to unlock your PC. 

Proactive Cortana 

Similar to Google Now, Cortana can analyze your email and other information to take action. If you receive email confirmation of a flight, for example, Cortana can add it to your calendar.
If you said in an email you'd send someone a note by the afternoon Cortana can remind you. If you try to add an appointment that conflicts with another one Cortana can identify that and notify you. Cortana's even getting interested in lunch and can help you make a reservation or order food if you have compatible apps on your device.
to Use Cortana in the Microsoft Edge Browser.

Detailed Cortana 

Cortana has always been able to do things like show your pictures or a document from last week. Now it can get even more specific. You can say things like, "Hey Cortana email Robert the spreadsheet I worked on yesterday" or "what's the name of the sporting goods store I visited last time I was in New York?" In my experience Cortana isn't quite as accurate as it should be with these kinds of queries, but it will probably improve over time.

Cortana on Android and Windows 10 Mobile 

One my favorite parts of Microsoft's Cortana improvements has to be the new integration between your phone (Android and Windows 10 Mobile only) and your PC. The new integration requires the Anniversary Update on your PC and your Windows 10 Mobile phone – Android users just need the latest version of Cortana from Google Play.
Once you've got the right software on your devices, open Cortana's settings again on your PC. Then active the on/off slider under the sub-heading "Send notifications between devices."
Do the same on your mobile device and you'll be able to receive all kinds of alerts from your phone on your PC. That's a great feature if you leave your phone charging on the other side of the house or your phone is stuffed in a bag at work.
Phone alerts that show up on your PC include text messages and missed calls, which Cortana did prior to the Anniversary Update, as well as notifications from apps on your phone. This can include everything from messaging apps like Telegram and WhatsApp, to alerts from your favorite news apps and Facebook. System notifications such as low battery alerts can also appear on your PC.
All notifications from your phone show up in the Action Center under a special heading to make clear which alerts are coming from your phone. The best part is you can select which apps should be able to send notifications to your PC. That way you don't get overwhelmed with a stream of notifications you don't need.
Those are the highlights for Cortana in the Windows 10 Anniversary Update. It's a solid update to a highly useful part of Windows 10 for those who don't mind talking to their PC. how to Use Cortana in the Microsoft Edge Browser.
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