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This article was published on August 19, 2015

Parallels 11 brings Microsoft’s Cortana to your Mac

Parallels 11 brings Microsoft’s Cortana to your Mac
Amanda Connolly
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Amanda Connolly

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Amanda Connolly is a reporter for The Next Web, currently based in London. Originally from Ireland, Amanda previously worked in press and ed Amanda Connolly is a reporter for The Next Web, currently based in London. Originally from Ireland, Amanda previously worked in press and editorial at the Web Summit. She’s interested in all things tech, with a particular fondness for lifestyle and creative tech and the spaces where these intersect. Twitter

Parallels, the Windows virtual machine tool for Mac OS X, has released its latest version today, bringing Microsoft’s Cortana to Macs before Siri.

While Parallels has been allowing people to run Windows apps on their Macs for years, this is the first time it has introduced a Windows feature on its own.

The new version, Parallels 11, is available today for $79.99 and if you’ve used the past two versions, you can upgrade for $49.99.

If you’re using a Mac Pro machine, there’s a special edition available specifically for the Pro hardware for $99.99 per year or $49.99 if you are upgrading from an older version.

With Parallels 11, you get full Windows 10 support, improved speed on launch and shut down and some new features like Travel Mode, which the company has said will save up to 25 percent of your battery life and most attractively, Cortana.

Cortana appears to work seamlessly on Mac from Parallel’s demonstration. You can summon the virtual assistant by saying “Hey Cortana” and if you’re not using it, Cortana hides away out of sight.

Screen Shot 2015-08-19 at 09.46.39

If Cortana runs as smoothly and seamlessly as Parallels has integrated Windows and Mac OS before, then it should be a real winner and a nudge for Apple to get Siri on the desktops.

➤ Parallels Desktop 11 for Mac Launches with Windows 10 Integration and OS X El Capitan Readiness, Up to 50 Percent Performance Improvements and Makes Microsoft’s Cortana Available to Mac Users in OS X [Parallels via Gizmodo]

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