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Microsoft’s Cortana assistant to be included in future Nissan, BMW cars

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Microsoft’s digital assistant Cortana is already present in our phones, PCs, tablets, Xboxes, and now, she’s coming to BMW and Nissan cars.

At the consumer electronics conference in Las Vegas, U.S. on Thursday, Nissan announced that it’s working with Microsoft on the use of the Cortana virtual assistant and other services that are part of a new connected vehicle platform.

Nissan is working directly with Microsoft on its connected vehicle platform, which utilises Azure, Cortana, and Office 365.

Nissan demonstrated Cortana integration in a concept video of what will be possible with the digital assistant.

Asking “what is my schedule” brings up the usual functionality of Cortana’s calendar integration, but Nissan also demonstrated the ability for Cortana to understand and suggest shortcuts to destinations, and even options to download new maps overnight.

At one point in the demo, Cortana even asks “shall I engage auto park?”

BMW, at the same event, said it plans to integrate a range of digital services into its cars including Amazon Prime, and of course, Cortana.

“At CES 2017”, BMW said that it would be “showcasing digital services that will allow drivers of future automated vehicles to optimise the way they plan their daily lives.”

This includes ‘Augmented Gesture Control’, through which, for example, a driver might simply be able to point to a building as they pass by, in order to get information on it, while the car does all the driving for them.

BMW added that its “connected driving experience will also be enhanced by intelligent voice control”, powered by a “personal digital assistant that customers are familiar with in other areas of their daily lives.”

This development comes a day after Google said that Daimler and Hyundai will be integrating the Google Assistant and Ford said Amazon’s Alexa virtual assistant will be coming to its cars.

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