May 10, 2017 2:15 pm

Cortana Skills Kit empowers developers to build intelligent experiences for millions of users

By / Partner Director of Program Management, Bing and Cortana Ecosystem

Today, we are pleased to announce the public preview of the Cortana Skills Kit which allows developers to easily create intelligent, personalized experiences for Cortana.

Our vision for Cortana has always been to create a digital personal assistant that’s available to users across all their devices, whenever and wherever they may need an extra hand to be more productive and get things done. With the new Cortana Skills Kit, developers can join in delivering that vision and reach millions of Cortana users across platforms including Windows 10, Android, iOS and soon on even more devices and form factors — like Xbox, the Harman Kardon Invoke smart speaker and inside cars and mixed reality devices.

To build a Cortana skill, developers can create their bot’s conversational logic using the Microsoft Bot Framework, and publish it to the new Cortana Channel within the Bot Framework, bringing speech capabilities to skills. Developers can understand users’ natural input and build custom machine-learned language models through LUIS.ai, and add intelligence with the power of Cognitive Services.

Cortana has rich knowledge and understanding about the user with the Skills Kit. Developers can now access knowledge about the user and build highly-relevant, personalized experiences based on the user’s preferences and context. Cortana only shares information with the user’s consent.

We realize that we are at the dawn of building conversational experiences for end users. Developers want to reach a large and diverse set of users to understand user needs and behaviors. There are over 145M monthly active users of Cortana worldwide. With the Cortana Skills Kit, developers can immediately reach the 60M users in the US and grow their international reach in the future*. To start building skills today, please visit https://developer.microsoft.com/en-us/Cortana.

We are also excited to announce a wide range of partners who have joined us on this journey and are building Cortana skills. Cortana users will be able to access skills from OpenTable, Expedia, Capital One, StubHub,  Food Network, HP, iHeartRadio, Domino’s, TuneIn, Uber, Safeco, Liberty Mutual, Knowmail, MovieTickets.com, Tact, MyTime, Skyscanner, Fresh Digital, Gigseekr, Gupshup, Matchbox Mobile, The Motley Fool, Ask My Buddy, Patron, Porch, Razorfish, StarFish Mint, TalkLocal, UPS, WebMD, Pylon, BigOven, CityFALCON, Dark Sky, Elokence, BLT Robotics, Web Guild, AI Games, XAPP Media, cWix, GameOn, MegaSuperWeb, Verge and Vokkal.co.

To learn more and discover the currently available skills visit: https://www.microsoft.com/en-us/windows/cortana/cortana-skills/

*Available in US only. Other markets will be added over time.

Updated May 12, 2017 1:34 pm

Join the conversation

  1. Cortana is a very intelligent program that has taken RSS to another level. I opted in to the program because it is actually associated with the manufacturing of my Toshiba laptop. My spouse purchased it for me right before I finished my Business Degree online. I really like how the program communicates with me to find my interests in the start up. However, it can be quite difficult when I’m really trying to get something accomplished on the Internet concerning my studies. If I had during the beginning of my studies for Business and New Merge Media Marketing I would probably have liked how persistent it is in finding subject materials often needed for writing my class papers. However, sometimes this laptop experiences problems of rejection when I close the Cortana. Sometimes I even have problem with the Internet, not really knowing if the Cortana is effecting it.

  2. Thank you for featuring Knowmail in this video. We are excited to embrace the latest in AI technologies along with other Microsoft partners!