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Tech Tip: Voice Searches With Cortana or Chrome

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Microsoft’s Cortana assistant may use the Edge browser, but you can select a preferred program as your default app in the Windows 10 settings.

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The New York Times

Q. When I do voice searches with Cortana in Windows 10, it always uses the Edge browser and the Bing search engine. Can I set it to use Google Chrome and search?

A. While workarounds like the Google Chrome Chrometana extension for redirecting Cortana-prompted Bing searches were once an easy option for using alternate software, Microsoft recently made changes to its software that broke Chrometana and restricted Cortana to using only Edge and Bing. (Programmers with a dislike of Bing and Edge immediately began to look for new solutions and you may find tools online to help get around Microsoft’s block, but download workaround programs and fiddle with your settings at your own risk.)

Cortana may have her loyalties, but you can still set Google Chrome as your default program for web browsing in Windows 10 if you do not like Microsoft Edge and Bing search. To set Chrome as your default browser, go to the Start Menu, open Settings and select System. In the System box, choose Default Apps, scroll down to the Web Browser area, tap the Edge icon and choose Chrome from the menu.

If you have not done so already, you can set Google as your default search engine in the Chrome settings. Although the hands-free command “O.K., Google” no longer works on the desktop version of Chrome, you can click or tap the microphone in the search box on the company’s home page and then give your spoken-word search request to Google. For some searches, like a check of the weather forecast, Google provides the answer audibly.

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