1. Rockotoo's Avatar
    I just tested the WP claim that Cortana is better than Siri. I used Siri a lot.

    Anyway, I often remember stuff to do while I'm driving, so on the iPhone, I'd hold the home button for two seconds and get the Siri prompt. then say something like "Remind me when I get home to feed the fish". Siri would say "Okay, <then repeat the reminder>, do you want me to remind you?". Dead simple!

    I tried that with Cortana today... I had to enter my security code, open Cortana, then press on the microphone icon. One strike against WP, too many button pushes to activate her! So I said "Remind me when I get home to feed the fish". She said "Okay, I'll remind you. What do you want me to remind you of?" So, I repeated my reminder, "Feed the fish." Then she asked "When do you want me to remind you?" So I repeated "When I get home." Then she said "There's a Home Depot about two miles from here. Is that where you want?" About now, I'm getting pissed at Cortana. Siri would have been done long ago... so I say "No, at home. My home." Same stupid question about Home Depot, at which time I canceled her to get back to my driving. And yes, I have a contact named "Home"...

    If Cortana is that dumb, I'll go back to my trusty iPhone...
    12-19-2014 03:02 PM
  2. wpfan86's Avatar
    I set reminders all the time with Cortana with no problem. People-based reminders, location-based reminders, time-based reminders all with absolutely no trouble.

    As for the multiple button presses, you're doing it the hard way. Even under lock screen, you just have to hold down the search button 🔍 and start taking. Not difficult at all.
    12-19-2014 03:06 PM
  3. Paul215821's Avatar
    Just turn on your screen (no need to unlock) and hold the search button, and Cortana is ready to listen, that simple. Normally she'll get your message clearly, I've had hardly any issues with her not getting what I'm saying. We're you speaking clearly? Is English your native language. Cortana's location reminders are actually really good.
    12-19-2014 03:07 PM
  4. ByeVanno's Avatar
    You can just hold down the search button to bring up cortana without having to unlock the device( you might have to go into settings to change that). About the misunderstanding after using Cortana for awhile it eventually gets better
    12-19-2014 03:07 PM
  5. kaantantr's Avatar
    You can activate Cortana by holding the search button for 2 seconds. You dont need to unlock your phone, click oncortana and click on microphone

    It always recognises when I say home. When I first launched Cortana, she asked me if a certain place is my home or not by remembering I spend most of my time at and she was correct so I said yes. Now everytime, she recognises its that place and has no trouble reminding me when I get home.

    Even if you have not yet tagged your home, she should then ask you where your home is, so I suggest she might be having trouble with you accent or something. Since its a service running on the same cloud and it is working perfectly for many people, it shouldnt be about your phone but you.
    12-19-2014 03:09 PM
  6. gpobernardo's Avatar
    I just tested the WP claim that Cortana is better than Siri. I used Siri a lot.

    Anyway, I often remember stuff to do while I'm driving, so on the iPhone, I'd hold the home button for two seconds and get the Siri prompt. then say something like "Remind me when I get home to feed the fish". Siri would say "Okay, <then repeat the reminder>, do you want me to remind you?". Dead simple!

    I tried that with Cortana today... I had to enter my security code, open Cortana, then press on the microphone icon. One strike against WP, too many button pushes to activate her! So I said "Remind me when I get home to feed the fish". She said "Okay, I'll remind you. What do you want me to remind you of?" So, I repeated my reminder, "Feed the fish." Then she asked "When do you want me to remind you?" So I repeated "When I get home." Then she said "There's a Home Depot about two miles from here. Is that where you want?" About now, I'm getting pissed at Cortana. Siri would have been done long ago... so I say "No, at home. My home." Same stupid question about Home Depot, at which time I canceled her to get back to my driving. And yes, I have a contact named "Home"...

    If Cortana is that dumb, I'll go back to my trusty iPhone...
    Indeed there were times when my experience in using Cortana wasn't how I expected it to be, but it could not be that bad all the time. Besides, would Siri remind you when you actually got home?

    I noticed that it would be "easier" to set up reminders if "nicknames" were given to locations (not only for work and home, e.g. give your workplace and your home a nickname), and then use those nicknames in the reminders.

    Back-end improvements are continually being done to Cortana so we can expect things to improve over time.

    Lastly, it takes a couple or so of trials for Cortana to get used to your voice. The first attempts would usually be a complete failure, but the succeeding attempts should be a lot better. At least this was my experience.
    aximtreo and xandros9 like this.
    12-19-2014 03:10 PM
  7. Rockotoo's Avatar
    As for the multiple button presses, you're doing it the hard way. Even under lock screen, you just have to hold down the search button �� and start taking. Not difficult at all.
    Thanks for that tip. I was a bit frustrated earlier! As you may be able to tell...

    We're you speaking clearly? Is English your native language. Cortana's location reminders are actually really good.
    Yes, I'm a native English speaker - and have been asked if I'm a professional reader! Yes, I speak very clearly. But that is a good question!

    Besides, would Siri remind you when you actually got home?
    Yep, Siri was pretty smart about that. And she required no training, testing, or nicknames. I'm sure I'll get to like Cortana, but I sure had a crappy introduction!
    Last edited by Guytronic; 12-19-2014 at 03:33 PM.
    12-19-2014 03:17 PM
  8. rhapdog's Avatar
    Excessive background noise or poor positioning of the microphone are known issues. A poor quality headset can also be a culprit.

    I've not had trouble with Cortana understanding me from day one, unless I was driving with the windows down and not using my Bluetooth headset that has the noise reduction technology.

    I use a Plantronics Voyager Legend Bluetooth headset, and to activate Cortana, all I have to do is press and hold the answer/disconnect button for 2 seconds, without ever touching the phone. No turning the screen on, no holding down search, no unlocking. Phone stays in the holster while I start Cortana. Most Bluetooth headsets are capable of activating Cortana in this fashion, and if you are using one (which I recommend if you use your phone while driving) then I would give it a try.
    12-20-2014 06:11 AM
  9. RumoredNow's Avatar
    ...on the iPhone, I'd hold the home button for two seconds and get the Siri prompt. then say something like "Remind me when I get home to feed the fish"...
    One factor a lot of people don't consider is retraining themselves.

    Siri listens in one way, Cortana in another. This is neither good nor bad, it simply is and needs to be accommodated. I've not used Siri, but imagine there was a point in time when you had to teach yourself just how she listens and that is groovy. It becomes natural. It also makes you complacent and set in a pattern.

    Cortana fits a different pattern. It's not that she's "dumb." She simply listens in a different way. When first starting out with her I had some trial and error. You have to put in a bit of time (as I'm sure you did with Siri once) to get to learn how her prompts work and set up your background info like locations and persons as a couple of example categories.

    You asked: Remind/Place/Task. That's how Siri hears it... Cortana hears: Remind/Task/Place.

    I just held down my search key, which triggered Cortana in listening mode inside of 2 seconds. I said, "Remind me to get potatoes at the grocery store." Cortana got it bang, dead on in one take, repeated it to me for confirmation and I replied, "Yes." She saved a geofenced note for me. As easy as you are asking it to be. I do have a location saved and nick named Grocery Store. I did take a try or two waaaaay back learning how she hears.

    That's all it is. Keep an open mind and try not to expect the same pattern that works on Siri to be a universal constant.

    I have tried Google Now and can assure you that is a 3rd pattern... If I wanted to transition to GN, I would expect I'd have to train myself on it a little bit.

    I really do hope you get more comfortable with Cortana. The more users she gets, the better she learns. Siri has had 3+ years in the field, Cortana less than 1 year. I have found Cortana to be a well thought out tool and highly useful since day one Alpha in the US and can see how she's getting better as time goes on...
    12-20-2014 09:52 AM
  10. Paul215821's Avatar
    Something that I forget to mention earlier, is that obviously she needs to know where your home is. If you just took your phone out of the box and haven't told Cortana yet where home is, she can't know. Either you have to add home under "places" in Cortana's notebook, or she'll figure it out herself in a few days by noticing where you spend most of your time, at which time she'll ask you to confirm that is indeed your home. Be sure to add home in Cortana's notebook, not in your contact list.
    I'm sure you had to tell Siri where you lived for her to know when to remind you, too.
    12-20-2014 02:13 PM
  11. elee@ulgm.org's Avatar
    My guess... bad connection between phone and car microphone. I have this same problem sometimes when using Cortana over my car Bluetooth. When I'm not in the car, it does an outstanding job of recognizing my speech.
    12-20-2014 02:43 PM
  12. J Frost's Avatar
    My father in law just got a L521, his first smart phone and my daughters were teaching him how to use Cortana the other night. He has a strong Irish accent and use alot of Irish slang. It took a while for Cortana to understand him correctly and for him to know that she doesn't understand all the slang. He still uses it and Cortana picks out the key words and performs the actions.
    He is blind in one eye following a small stroke and the use of Cortana for making a call or dictating a message is huge.
    I have used personally used WP for a few years and am very comfortable with the os, to the point of the original post, switching from the known to the unknown is tough and frustrating.
    RumoredNow likes this.
    12-28-2014 10:17 AM
  13. ReneRaul212113's Avatar
    I just tested the WP claim that Cortana is better than Siri. I used Siri a lot.

    Anyway, I often remember stuff to do while I'm driving, so on the iPhone, I'd hold the home button for two seconds and get the Siri prompt. then say something like "Remind me when I get home to feed the fish". Siri would say "Okay, <then repeat the reminder>, do you want me to remind you?". Dead simple!

    I tried that with Cortana today... I had to enter my security code, open Cortana, then press on the microphone icon. One strike against WP, too many button pushes to activate her! So I said "Remind me when I get home to feed the fish". She said "Okay, I'll remind you. What do you want me to remind you of?" So, I repeated my reminder, "Feed the fish." Then she asked "When do you want me to remind you?" So I repeated "When I get home." Then she said "There's a Home Depot about two miles from here. Is that where you want?" About now, I'm getting pissed at Cortana. Siri would have been done long ago... so I say "No, at home. My home." Same stupid question about Home Depot, at which time I canceled her to get back to my driving. And yes, I have a contact named "Home"...

    If Cortana is that dumb, I'll go back to my trusty iPhone...
    09-07-2016 12:07 AM
  14. Oneota's Avatar
    I am a native speaker of English. I gave up after maybe a total of an hour trying to train Cortana to understand me. And when I asked it (NOT "her") by typing in the question, "What is Siri?" it answered something like "Doing well, I hope." If the program can't tell the difference between "what" and "how" -- well...
    10-01-2016 02:33 PM
  15. Martin Zone's Avatar
    She can be, indeed. Try to get her to tell you what's the time.
    10-12-2016 11:59 AM
  16. salty dawg's Avatar
    I ask "hey cortana...open the pod bay door" she just searches Bing
    10-12-2016 12:56 PM

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