Google Says Not Worried If Microsoft’s Cortana Comes To Android & iOS

Company says it's great to have more focused on predictive search. Google also seems to have no plans to bring Google Now to Windows Phone.

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News that Microsoft plans to bring its Cortana digital assistant to Android and iOS doesn’t worry Google that its own Google Now tool will suffer. The company said that predictive search is so new that the more companies working on it, the better.

The comment came from Aparna Chennapragada, director of product for Google Now, during a SXSW session on Google Now that I moderated yesterday. I asked if she thought Cortana coming to iOS and Android would have an impact on Google Now. Google offers Google Now on both those platforms.

“I’m going to say something super cliche, but it’s what i believe in, which is, I think it’s great. I think it’s great. This is the gorund floor of predictive technology,” Chennapragada said. “We’re just starting to figure out how these things in our pockets can help us see and act on information. We’re just trying to figure out what are the right experiences. I think having more folks focus on it and help users on it is great.”

Google Now Not Likely To Come To Windows Phone

Google Now is part of the Google Search App for both iOS and Android. Google also makes a fairly rudimentary Google Search App for Windows Phone, but Google Now is not part of that. Will this change?

Chennapragada declined to answer that. Instead, she said Google Now is an information service that “should go to where users are and where we think users will be.”

I take that to mean don’t hold out much hope, given Windows Phone’s low percentage of the smartphone space. The Google Search App still seems the only Google app Google makes for Windows Phone, as opposed to the many apps it makes for iOS. So Google does care about search on Windows Phone, but probably not enough to enhance the app further.

No News On Apple Watch & Google Now

Asked about bringing Google Now to the Apple Watch, Chennapragada said there was nothing to say, echoing Google’s earlier statement on the subject. But she also repeated that Google wants to go where the users are and will be to help them with decisions.

Ads Not Coming To Google Now

And will ads come to Google Now? “We’re strictly focused on the user experience,” she said — so no. Nothing on the immediate horizon. How about “years from now in the far distant future,” I joked. “If you have core organic value in the product, I think monetization will follow,” said said — but stress its “most important” to get things right for the user.

Opinions expressed in this article are those of the guest author and not necessarily MarTech. Staff authors are listed here.

About the author

Danny Sullivan
Danny Sullivan was a journalist and analyst who covered the digital and search marketing space from 1996 through 2017. He was also a cofounder of Third Door Media, which publishes Search Engine Land, MarTech, and produces the SMX: Search Marketing Expo and MarTech events. He retired from journalism and Third Door Media in June 2017. You can learn more about him on his personal site & blog He can also be found on Facebook and Twitter.

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