<p>Microsoft has announced that it will be bringing an advanced version of Cortana, its personal smartphone assistant, to iOS and Android.</p><p>Cortana has been running on Windows Phones for about a year now. It's Microsoft's own take on Apple's Siri, basically. And yes, the name is based on the AI character from the Halo series.</p><p>Cortana has speech recognition, searches the internet using Bing, and learns your interests.</p><p>This upcoming advanced version uses research from an artificial intelligence project called "Einstein."</p><p>Eric Horvitz, managing director of Microsoft Research, told Reuters that this enables Cortana to do even more. And that includes reading and understanding email, apparently.</p><p>This means that Cortana could tell you when to leave for a trip to the airport after realising you had planned a flight from reading your email..