Hackers Bring Microsoft Cortana’s Android Cousin; Meet Portaña
Microsoft’s personal voice assistant Cortana to land on Windows Phone platform is far from debuting on Android devices, but a group of hackers based in Italy has made it possible. The group, who call themselves OrangeSec, claims to have ported Microsoft’s Cortana to Android. The new personal assistant is named as Portaña.
The hackers made some alterations in Cortana’s program and brought out a version compatible with Google’s operating system. The tweaked version is very much similar to Cortana, but has some limitations. The hackers admit that the project isn’t that impressive and requires users to stay online for work. The reason being, even though it is running on Android hardware, it is still communicating with Microsoft’s back-end servers with the ported interface. To cut it short, you cannot use it to integrate with Android devices like Cortana does with Windows. OrangeSec used combinations of hardware proxies, custom SSL certificates and DNS spoofing for making this project work out. For now, Portaña can communicate in Italian only.
OrangeSec unveiled their mod at the Droidcon 2015 and admitted it to be a concept only. Hence, there are lesser chances of OrangeSec coming up with an official release. It is rumoured that Microsoft is planning to bring the voice assistant for both iOS and Android, but it doesn’t seem to happen anytime soon.
Cortana is named after an artificial intelligent (AI) character from the famed video game Halo. The personality of the voice assistant is also derived from the AI companion of the game. Cortana also offers usual voice-assistance features like setting reminders and calendar, weather and traffic information, writing notes and messages.
The generation of voice assistants kicked off with Apple’s Siri, back with the release of iPhone 4S in 2011. Microsoft soon followed by launching its very own Cortana on Windows 10 PC and smartphones. Meanwhile, Cortana is officially limited to Windows Phone.