I don’t use Cortana very much. I don’t have Cortana powered speakers. I don’t have Cortana app installed on my cellphone and I don’t use any Windows Phones anymore… but one thing that I have and majority of people do is a Windows 10 computer. If you do own that, then Cortana comes installed by default on it and you can actually use it to do some really cool stuff if you happen to have Smart devices in your home. I said in the beginning I don’t use Cortana very much but that could change today….
So, back in the second half of 2017, Microsoft released an update that allowed Cortana to be able to integrate with Connected Home providers. Then Wink also confirmed in October 2017 that Cortana now works with Wink. In addition to Wink, Cortana also supports Nest, Insteon, SmartThings and Philips Hue. I only have Nest and Wink and that’s what I ended up configuring.
The configuration is actually pretty easy. Go to the Cortana Icon or Search bar next to Start Menu (Windows Button) on Bottom left corner of your screen.
This will open the Cortana Menu. You will need to go to Cortana Notebook.
Once, in you will see several options and one of them will be “Connected Home”. Select that option.
Once inside “Connected Home”, you will need to select “Enable Connected Home” to be able to proceed further. Once you enable that you will see several providers.
Then based on the service, you will be asked to enter your credentials so Cortana can access your accounts.
I first did Nest and that went pretty well.
I then did Wink.
Once connected, Cortana will show these Services as Connected. It will also automatically discover any Devices provided by these services and update it’s database.
Prior to testing, I also changed the Cortana settings so that it can be invoked whenever I say “Hey Cortana”.
For the testing, I tried to turn on a light by saying “Hey Cortana, turn on Office Lights”. I was expecting Cortana will connect to Wink and take the necessary action. It worked flawlessly…
First, it tried to make sense of what I said.
Then took the action. And yes, the Office Ceiling Light did turn on.
Similarly I was also able to control my Nest Thermostat by saying “Hey Cortana, set thermostat to XX degrees”.
Summing up, the Cortana and Connected Home integration works very good. If you are a Cortana fan or use Windows 10 this can be very handy. I am also going to test this on Cortana app on my Android Phone and see how the experience is. Rest assured it’s not going to replace my Amazon Echo devices in future.