MacBook Pro 16-inch M1 Max review The Facebook Papers: How to read all MacBook Pro 14-inch M1 Pro review MacOS Monterey is here World Series 2021: How to watch Guardians of the Galaxy game review

Cortana app for iOS, Android going silent in UK, Canada, Australia, Microsoft says

Affected markets also include China, Germany, India, Mexico and Spain.

Cortana on Android

Cortana's role is shifting.

Nate Ralph/CNET

Microsoft is discontinuing its Cortana mobile app for Android and iOS in the UK, Canada, Australia and several other countries, the company said this week. As of Jan. 31, Microsoft will no longer support the virtual assistant app in the above-mentioned countries, it said in three regional support notes. When asked if the iOS and Android apps will also be shuttered in the US, a Microsoft spokesperson said that in addition to Britain, Australia and Canada, affected markets include China, Germany, India, Mexico and Spain.

People have used the app, which is synced with Cortana on Windows 10, to set reminders, look up information and keep tabs on their day. But Cortana hasn't been holding her own against Alexa, Siri and Google Assistant, and this past January, Microsoft started scaling back its ambitions.

CEO Satya Nadella said then that the company sees Cortana as a helper specific to Office 365, the subscription-based version of Microsoft's productivity suite. And on Saturday, the Microsoft spokesperson pointed to Office 365.

"Cortana is an integral part of our broader vision to bring the power of conversational computing and productivity to all our platforms and devices," the spokesperson said in a statement. "To make Cortana as helpful as possible, we're integrating Cortana deeper into your Microsoft 365 productivity apps, and part of this evolution involves ending support for the Cortana mobile app on Android and iOS."

Lists, reminders and other content created by way of the iOS or Android app will still be accessible via Cortana on Windows, the company said in its support posts, and it added that Cortana reminders, lists and tasks are automatically synced to the free Microsoft To Do mobile app.

Originally published Nov. 16, 12:05 p.m. PT.
Update, 4:06 p.m.: Adds information from Microsoft spokesperson.