Microsoft confirms Halo voice actress Jen Taylor for WP8.1’s Cortana

Just a few hours back, we got to hear Microsoft’s new Cortana voice assistant speak for the first time. The company is understandably excited about what Cortana can do for WP8.1 users, and presents the system as a much more user-aware alternative to Siri or Google Now. But when we’re talking with Cortana, just who is it we’re hearing respond? Back in January, rumors suggested that Microsoft had tapped Jen Taylor to reprise her role as Cortana from the Halo games to model her voice for the service. What we heard today sounded close enough to Cortana from the games, but is this really Jen Taylor behind it? Sure as sugar, Microsoft has confirmed her involvement, and it looks like Cortana is only going to sound more and more like her.

According to Microsoft, the Cortana beta we got to hear today draws speech samples from multiple sources, and Miss Taylor is just one of them. Cortana will evolve as it prepares to shed that “beta” tag, and part of that evolution will involve using Jen’s voice for more and more of the Cortana experience.

There you have it: this isn’t some Cortana sound-alike, but capital-C Cortana herself. How much more excited does this make you to get your hands on a WP8.1 device and finally start talking to Cortana for yourself?


Please forgive her choice in smartphone, WP fans.

Source: Neowin
Via: WMPoweruser

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Stephen Schenck
Stephen has been writing about electronics since 2008, which only serves to frustrate him that he waited so long to combine his love of gadgets and his degree in writing. In his spare time, he collects console and arcade game hardware, is a motorcycle enthusiast, and enjoys trapping blue crabs. Stephen's first mobile device was a 624 MHz Dell Axim X30, which he's convinced is still a viable platform. Stephen longs for a market where phones are sold independently of service, and bandwidth is cheap and plentiful; he's not holding his breath. In the meantime, he devours smartphone news and tries to sort out the juicy bits Read more about Stephen Schenck!