Online shopping can be both a convenient and great way to save money, and Microsoft wants to save you even more. A recently announced Cortana feature will help customers more easily compare prices.
Save Shopping Money
Microsoft has announced that they've begun a pilot program for a new Cortana feature that will — when paired with Microsoft Edge — help users more easily find the cheapest price on items. While shopping in the Edge browser, Cortana will pull up a sidebar that lists similar products and prices from various retailers, including Amazon, Best Buy, and Home Depot.
The way the program works is that when you're shopping, Cortana will notify you of new deals via the address bar, which will then display the prices on the side of the screen. The program is similar to a deal-finding feature that was introduced last year. That feature would pull up deals and help you find coupons on various products. This new feature isn't focused on sales or special discounts but simply on price.
That being said, the emphasis on price does leave the software with a few limitations. For starters, it only focuses on the base list price and does not take sales into account nor does it appear to factor in shipping or taxes. If you have free shipping through Amazon Prime but not through Home Depot, for example, then trusting this feature could end up costing money. The software will also only pull up products if it finds a lower price, so it may not take into account things such as buy-one-get-one-free sales or similar offers.
Price Isn't Everything
Of course, price isn't the only determining factor in deciding where people shop. Cortana will not give information regarding return policies, warranties, shipping times, or anything of that nature. In other words, this can be a useful tool, but don't rely on it too much.
This feature is currently available for those who have installed the Creators Update, and Microsoft is soliciting feedback on it now. Aside from that, the fact that this is only available on Microsoft Edge may limit its reach, as Edge only holds about 5 percent of the market. Though between features such as this and limiting Windows 10 S to Edge by default, Microsoft is clearly hoping to increase the browser's market share.
Eric Brackett Tech Times editor Eric Brackett is a tech junkie and a gamer, covering science and technology. Follow him on Facebook and Twitter for updates and his random thoughts on the latest trends in gaming, tech, and comic books.