We told you previously that Microsoft has other plans for Cortana rather than just the usual digital assistant. It looks like they’re now rolling out some of the plans related to that, at least for Outlook and Microsoft 365. Cortana will get a Play My Emails feature within the Outlook app and it just doesn’t read your emails out loud but uses artificial intelligence to give you a better and more convenient experience. Unfortunately for us Android users, it’s only for iOS devices for now.
The idea behind Play My Emails is of course for when you’re driving or doing something else so you can’t read your emails the normal way. When you’re connected to an audio device, either through Bluetooth or wired, you can just select the Play icon on the bottom of the screen. If you will utilize your device’s built-in speaker, swipe right to open the side menu and then tao in the Play icon.
More than just reading your email in a straightforward manner, Cortana also relies on some AI magic so you will be able to hear the emails that are important to you. Once you start the feature, it will first read to you any changes to your schedule in the next 48 hours. Then it will read the 30 most recent unread emails that came to your inbox the past 24 hours. And if you have email thread, it will be read from oldest ons first. If you’ve enabled Focused Inbox, then only those from that inbox will be read.
The feature supports several voice commands which has to be uttered at the end of the message. You can say things like Reply, Next, Previous, Skip, Pause Resume, Archive, etc. When you say Reply, it’s an automatic reply to all command so if you want to send to the sender only, just say no and then wait for the prompt asking if you want to reply only to the original sender. You’ll also see some commands for touch screen use and also connected Bluetooth devices.
Unfortunately, this Cortana feature for Outlook is not yet available for Android devices. They did say it will come soon to Android but as to when that will be, that is still undetermined at this time.