Windows 10 light wallpaper

Move over, Cortana: Amazon’s Alexa voice assistant could come to Windows 10’s lock screen. A small, quiet change to a new Windows 10 Insider build will enable “third-party digital assistants” on the lock screen.

Microsoft isn’t betting too big on Cortana as a digital assistant anymore. You can already download Alexa for Windows 10, and Cortana has already left Windows 10’s search bar. Now, Cortana won’t be the only voice assistant with access to your PC’s lock screen.

This change arrived in Windows 10 Insider build 18362.10005. Buried in a list of small fixes, Microsoft’s blog post says this build includes:

A change to enable third-party digital assistants to voice activate above the Lock screen.

Based on this comment, it looks like Amazon’s Alexa will be getting access to the lock screen. All Amazon has to do is enable this feature. Google (or even Apple) could integrate with this, too—but only Amazon offers a Windows 10 app for Alexa.

This particular insider build is for Windows 10 19H2, which will arrive in the second half of 2019—likely around October 2019. Alexa could be coming to your PC’s lock screen later this year.

Alexa saying "I'm ready" on Windows 10

Profile Photo for Chris Hoffman Chris Hoffman
Chris Hoffman is Editor-in-Chief of How-To Geek. He's written about technology for over a decade and was a PCWorld columnist for two years. Chris has written for The New York Times and Reader's Digest, been interviewed as a technology expert on TV stations like Miami's NBC 6, and had his work covered by news outlets like the BBC. Since 2011, Chris has written over 2,000 articles that have been read more than one billion times---and that's just here at How-To Geek.
Read Full Bio »