Whether you have been on YouTube or TV this past week, you have probably seen the Google Home Alone ad. Featuring Macaulay Culkin recreating his role in Home Alone, albeit as an adult, the ad highlights the power of Google Home and Google Assistant.
Katie Anderson, Business Strategy Manager at Microsoft, recreated the Home Along ad with Cortana. As you may know, Cortana is a productivity-focused assistant these days, designed to boost enterprise efficiency.
To highlight this face, Anderson's video removes the consumer-automations of Google Home. In their place are Cortana features that bring her work office together. Indeed, Anderson says Cortana in the workplace organizes her productivity much better than her home office.
— Katie Anderson (@AndeKat101) December 21, 2018
Earlier this year, Microsoft shifted the focus of Cortana and said it was becoming a productivity assistant. Over the last year, a lot of negative press – mostly justified – surrounding Microsoft Cortana.
Microsoft Cortana was originally marketed a personal assistant. However, Microsoft's efforts to compete with the likes of Siri and Amazon's Alexa failed. Indeed, Alexa is now integrated with Windows 10 and Xbox, while Microsoft and Amazon are in partnership with each other.
That partnership allows Alexa to be called on Cortana and Cortana to be called on Alexa. Microsoft is clearly moving towards Cortana handling productivity situations and Alexa dealing with personal tasks.
Google Assistant during the holidays
As for Google Assistant, there have been several Holiday themed features announced this month. Last week, Google rolled out a new ability to warn people about flight delays before they happen. For more holiday-focused feature on Google Assistant, Mountain View rolled out a recent update.
When a child (or indeed anyone) interacts with Google Assistant using polit phrases such as “please” and “thank you”, the virtual assistant now offers rewards. Those rewards are a polite return in its own words.