(Photo by Sasha Haagensen/Getty Images for Microsoft)
Is Microsoft joining the AI fray? Things seem to be pointing in that direction after rumors saying the software company is set to add a Home Hub feature to Windows 10 has surfaced recently.
Microsoft is not making an Amazon Echo-esque device as many believed. Those over at Windows Central have gathered information that the Home Hub is a software feature in Windows 10 that will make shared computers “more communal”. Home Hub is also designed to bring the connected home to Windows.
Before, a shared PC requires individual users to switch to their account before using it. Anyone can also use the shared PC through the guest account. With the Home Hub, all these will be a thing of the past.
Home Hub provides a ‘family account’ which allows the PC to be unlocked without entering a password. The users can access everything that has been shared by the members of the family such as to-do lists, shopping lists, calendars, etc. Each user will still have his or her account but will now have access to all data that other users in the shared network want to share.
The Home Hub has been in development even before Redstone 1 was released. Some features of the Windows 10 Anniversary Update were actually made with Home Hub in mind. Cortana, for example, is accessible from the lock screen.
Cortana will play a vital role in Home Hub as it will have access to the shared and individual accounts. Users of AI devices such as Google Home often lament about being limited to just one account. Microsoft’s Home Hub solves that problem.
Microsoft is only one of handful tech companies that have yet to release a voice-controlled smart speaker.
Amazon already has the Echo with its AI named Alexa. Google has been at it for quite some time with Google Home. Apple has its own digital assistant in Siri but the company has yet to develop a smart speaker. Samsung is reportedly developing its voice-assisted AIs which will possibly be named Bixby and Kestra.