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Microsoft debuts Visio Viewer for iPad, updates look & feel of Cortana iOS app

Microsoft on Thursday brought another productivity app to iOS, its diagramming tool Visio, while promising an enhanced iPhone version of its voice assistant, Cortana.

Visio's first presence on iOS is actually in the guise of Visio Viewer, a browsing-only app for the iPad. For now editing is still reserved for Visio Pro on desktops.

Viewer can load files from email, OneDrive, or SharePoint, and share them as links or attachments. Using "Layer," people can see alternate visualizations of the same diagram, while text search enables finding items in shapes.

Visio Viewer is a free download, and runs on any iPad with iOS 9 or later. iPhone support is due in the next few months.

A Cortana update will rollout to iPhone owners over the next several weeks, and should feature a simplified design with "quick action" buttons that accomplish tasks like setting reminders or checking the weather. Likewise, answers to questions will appear in a cleaner fullscreen layout.

Microsoft is also promising to improve speed. The current iPhone version of Cortana is a free download, and requires iOS 8.