Last November, Xbox got a major update. It made the UI faster, more social, and in general better in my opinion. Soon, as in today soon, preview members and Xbox app(beta) will be getting access to the new experience. The rest of the population will get access in just a few weeks.
There are multiple pieces to this update, so we will break them into chunks. Up first is an added app (or AI) that has been long awaited on the console.
This Summer, console users are finally getting Cortana for their consoles. While she is identical to the phone/PC version, there are some new commands that are available to consoles. These include multiple user interface commands, such as “Hey Cortana, show me what —– is doing right now.” and “Hey Cortana, invite —- to a party.” It is like the “Xbox command” that launched with the system, only much better. She will be able to recognize both your Gamertag, and real name if it is made available. For example, if you want to invite XxMLGBongSnipesxX to a party, you can just say “invite Cody” and XxMLGBongSnipesxX will be added.
If you do not have a Kinect, do not fret! She will respond to commands given through the headset, which is a huge request that has been requested, even by me. This also allows the accuracy of Cortana to improve.
You can now see on the console if your friend is playing on the PC App. Not only this, but if you are on the PC, you can see when your friend is on Steam, and still message them/invite them to parties. This is a feature that is being used to make the gamers feel more connected across multiple platforms.
Facebook Friend Finder is coming to the console, allowing players to add friends from Facebook with ease. All you have to do is link your accounts and you are set.
Also coming with this update, the Games collection is getting an overhaul for usability. It will now be scroll vertical style, as opposed to horizontal on the current build. The density has also been increased to show more games on the screen at once for easier scrolling. If you prefer to have the larger tiles, that is now an option.
Along with this, the install section has been redesigned. Now, you can not only see the game downloading and at what percentage it is at, but also how many gigabytes have been downloaded, out of how many, and what your download speed is. There is also a view by group now, which allows you to quickly find titles of a certain letter that you want to play, instead of scroller all the way to T or W. A quick note, ready to install is no longer at the end of your games list, but its own category for quicker usage. RT and LT are now used to jump up and down through the collection for faster navigation.
My games & apps is now located at the top of the home screen for easier access, as well as what game you are downloading and what the status of the download is.
The Xbox and Windows Store is going through a convergence. Now, these stores will work off of each other, as opposed to against each other. Players will be able to identify which version of the game they are buying easier, so there is no possible repeat purchase. Along with this, Microsoft is making it easier to navigate the store.
With the activity feed, you can now select what you want to post to the feed, whether it be Achievements, Pictures and Videos, or just Achievements.
Oh boy, here we go. Right up my alley. Now you can use any video editing software, edit your game videos that are essentially imported directly to them, then turn around and show off your sweet mlg game montages, or just simple edits, no judging.
Also sneaking in in the update is that the game bar on Windows 10 gaming will now allow gamers to record games in 60fps easily.
So that is the update, releasing soon for consoles and PCs in the preview programs. What do you think? A jump in the right direction? Or is it more of a stumble than a leap. Let us know! This announcement coming the week before the E3 press conference for Microsoft has me extremely excited to see what is coming in the next week!