How to use Cortana outside the US?


Thanks for asking Cortana 🙂 and thanks for making my Windows Phone better. Yesterday Microsoft released Windows Phone 8.1 to all Windows Phone developers. To download you have to have a Windows Phone Store account and the app Preview for Developers installed on your phone. One of the most awaited features of the 8.1 update was Cortana, Microsoft’s new personal assistant for Windows Phone. It takes her name from Cortana, the AI in Halo, and it can help you with all your daily needs, set reminders, check the weather and much more.

When I installed the 8.1 update which takes around 15 to 30 mins, I tapped on the search button to start trying out Cortana. BUT.. the normal Bing search showed up! Why is that? Do I have to download another update? As with most things by Microsoft, it is first available in the US language, and the same thing with Cortana. She’s currently only available in one language: English (United States). Most probably most of the phones outside the US are set to use English (United Kingdom) or their own country’s language.

To start using Cortana:

  • go to the settings page
  • tap on language
  • and choose English (United States)



If English (United States) is not in the list, tap add language and choose the US language.

You will now find Cortana in the apps list. Don’t be shy to her, to break the ice, tell her to sing a song 🙂

But beware, Cortana will start absorbing all the Internet!


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