Microsoft might be busy making Cortana better at holding conversations, but the software maker is also increasingly separating its digital assistant from Windows 10. This began with Cortana's disconnection from the recent Windows 10 May 2019 update, and now Microsoft is bringing Cortana to the Microsoft Store as a separate app. A Cortana beta has appeared in the store, and it indicates that the digital assistant cannot ultimately be built into Windows 10.
Microsoft uses this beta app to update Cortana separately from Windows 10, so the digital assistant may get new features quickly. However, Cortana has always been built as a web-based service so that it can be updated without changes to Windows 10. It is not immediately clear what Microsoft has planned here, but it is probably connected to the upcoming beta phase of the code name 19H2 Windows 10 update.
Microsoft was planning to test 19H2 now, and originally promised a spring release for testers. The company was surprisingly quiet about what 19H2 even contains, but it is expected to arrive later this year with a full Linux kernel. Microsoft has even started testing the first 2020 Windows 10 update for 19H2 and continues to build testers.