Microsoft is launching a set of skills for Cortana at its Build developer conference today. The new skills are similar to Amazon’s Echo skills, allowing developers to integrate their apps and services into the Cortana digital assistant. One of the first supported skills is the popular Dark Sky weather notification service. “Hey Cortana, ask Dark Sky for today’s forecast” will trigger a forecast from Cortana, and Windows 10 users won’t need to actually install or authorize Dark Sky to start using it.
Domino’s has also created a Cortana skill that’s available today. You’ll need to link a Domino’s Pizza account to use it, but you can start ordering pizza through Microsoft’s digital assistant. There are a variety of other skills, including iHeartRadio, TuneIn, OpenTable, and fun ones like Cat Facts. Microsoft is only launching an early preview of these Cortana skills today, but many more are expected to arrive in the coming months.
As Cortana is cloud-powered, these skills will work across all devices that use Cortana, including iOS, Android, Windows, and new devices like Harman Kardon’s Cortana speaker. HP is also creating a Cortana-powered speaker, and more device makers are expected to announce similar devices later this year.