Next Xbox One system update for preview members ads a ton of cool features

Microsoft is rolling out an update to its Xbox One preview members in this next version and here’s a full list of what to expect.

Game DVR for PC games – The Game bar lets you record game clips of your favorite Windows games. With an upcoming Windows Insider update (build 10061 or higher), you will be able to record game clips for Windows PC games* using the new Game bar available on Windows 10. To bring up the Game bar, press Windows + G. Click the “Record that” button to save the last 30 seconds of gameplay, or just press Windows + Alt + G. Additionally, you can manually start and stop recording a game clip by clicking on the “Record” button on the Game bar or pressing Windows + Alt + R.

The length of a recording, including the maximum length, can be changed in Settings > Game DVR in the Xbox app. There are also a few key settings within the Game bar itself. Get started by turning on “Record game clips and screenshots” in the Xbox app.  Once enabled, there are options for background recording, video and audio quality. After enabling game DVR, you may need to sign out of Windows 10 and back in for the Game bar to appear.

  • Screenshots – Take screenshots of Windows PC games by pressing Windows + Alt + PrtScr. Just as with Game DVR, you can also do this by clicking the “Screenshot” button on the Game bar.
  • Live Tiles – The Xbox tile on your Windows 10 start menu can now welcomes you back, showing off your gamerpic and letting you know when you have new messages and activity alerts. To turn this on, go to Settings > General > Live tile.
  • Avatar app – A new app is available in the Windows Store to customize your Xbox avatar’s appearance and outfit your avatar with a vast collection of items. In the Xbox app, click the icon for your profile or your friends’ profiles to see their Xbox avatar. You can download the Avatar app from the Store on Windows 10. Also, there is a new Avatar sub-forum on the Xbox Feedback site, here.
  • User profile – You can see another gamer’s bio, location, reputation, tenure, and other information in the more info page, including their animated avatar. You can also view their showcase items, including favorite achievements or game clips they added to their profile on their Xbox One.
  • Real name sharing – Similar to the features we brought you in the March update on Xbox One, you can now choose to share your real name on the Xbox app with all of your friends or with everybody. Click on the “…” at the top of your profile page, then choose Name sharing settings to view and update these settings.

In addition to keeping you connected to your games and friends, we’re giving you even more control over the Xbox experience on Windows 10.

  • Xbox One Now Playing and media controls The games and apps you’ve used most recently on your Xbox One are now displayed when you connect the Xbox app to your console. You can also use the Xbox app to pause, fast forward and rewind.
  • Live TV streaming and PIP (picture in picture) support – For preview members with an Xbox One Digital TV Tuner (in 16 European countries and Australia) or a Hauppauge 955Q TV Tuner (available in the U.S. or Canada) attached to their Xbox One, you can now stream live TV within your home from your Xbox One to Windows 10 PC running the Xbox app. This feature is also available in Xbox One SmartGlass on Windows 8 PCs, Windows Phone 8, iOS, and Android devices.  The OneGuide on mobile devices now also provides PIP (picture in picture) support, so you can continue to stream and watch TV while you are using the OneGuide.
  • Xbox controller drivers – The drivers for Xbox controllers are now included with Windows 10, so you no longer have to download and install controller drivers on Windows 10.

The Xbox app will automatically update to the April preview version when it becomes available in the Windows Store. Once you receive the update, your version number should be 4.4.9014.0 or higher. You can verify the version number of the Xbox app in Settings.

Xbox One and SmartGlass updates

The Xbox team continues to work hard to bring the many fan-requested features on the Xbox Feedback site to Xbox One and Xbox One SmartGlass, with the following items being available to preview members this month:

  • Over-the-air TV for the U.S. and Canada – Earlier this month, we announced the preview for an Over-the-Air Tuner for the U.S. and Canada.  With this preview update to Xbox One, a new screen has been added after the initial channel scan to show a sorted list of channels and channel logos so you can tell what channels you receive. You can also choose to scan again from this screen, if you want to move your antenna and give it another try.
  • Power on and off from Xbox One SmartGlass – The beta versions of the Xbox One SmartGlass apps for Windows, Windows Phone and Android will be updated to let you turn your Xbox One on and off. (Your device does need to be on the same home network as your console.) This feature request has more than 4,000 votes on the Xbox Feedback site. The beta versions can be found in the respective stores by searching for “Xbox One SmartGlass Beta.”
  • Wireless Display appWith more than 2,000 votes, Miracast support will be enabled on Xbox One for preview participants later this week, so you can mirror the experiences on Windows PCs (for example, Surface 2, 3, or 3 Pro; Lenovo X1 carbon; Dell Venue 8), Windows Phone 8, and some Android devices (e.g. Samsung S5, Nexus 7, Motorola Droid) that support non-protected Miracast connections. Try the Wireless Display app to cast photos stored on your phone to your Xbox One, or to stream non-protected video content from your PC to your Xbox.
  • User-selectable power mode – The team here at Xbox is also altering the initial setup experience on Xbox One worldwide to enable you to select your preferred power mode. Instant-on enables you to use the “Xbox on” voice command and receive background updates to console, game and app updates. Energy-saving mode is a low power state that requires you to press the Xbox button on your console to start up your Xbox One. For additional information, see this post on Xbox Wire.
  • Voice messages – The ability to send and receive voice messages from the Xbox One messages app continues in preview this month. Also, the ability to create a voice message while in a party chat will be enabled and support will be added for third party headsets.

This update will soon be live and for those of you  running the Windows 10 preview it’ll be even more interesting as Microsoft loads up the Xbox app with features.

Source: Microsoft

December Xbox One Update Will Be Small, Screenshot Feature & Faster Install Times Coming in 2015

Microsoft is apparently taking a break for the holidays as the head of Xbox Phil Spencer confirms to IGN that the Xbox team will release a small update for December. He believes the team has worked hard this year and everyone deserves a pause. “In December, it’s probably a time for us to pause for a little bit and settle just as all the new consoles are coming online.” according to Spencer.

See also: November update rolls out to Preview Members, brings many UI improvements and new features

He also notes that the Xbox One screenshot feature will not roll out this year because of many technical challenges around it – taking screenshots on Xbox One is not as simple as it seems. Even he admits he was initially baffled by why the team could not come up with a viable solution. “We can do video, how hard can it be to just grab a frame of the video?” Spencer says he asked the team jokingly. It turns out that screenshot quality is not the greatest when you simply clip a frame from the video.

Things are looking good however, as the Xbox team seems to be on the verge of breakthrough for this pestering problem. Spencer notes “It’s a little more technically challenging than I thought. Two weeks ago, they think they’ve found a good solution for screenshots. They’re working on it. They know people want it. The team has a path to getting it done, and now it’s just prioritizing.”

Spencer also tells IGN that they are all aware of the slower Xbox One install times and that they are working hard on improving that. He goes as far as saying that it is his personal priority.

Source: IGN

December Xbox One Update Will Be Small, Screenshot Feature & Faster Install Times Coming in 2015

Microsoft is apparently taking a break for the holidays as the head of Xbox Phil Spencer confirms to IGN that the Xbox team will release a small update for December. He believes the team has worked hard this year and everyone deserves a pause. “In December, it’s probably a time for us to pause for a little bit and settle just as all the new consoles are coming online.” according to Spencer.

See also: November update rolls out to Preview Members, brings many UI improvements and new features

He also notes that the Xbox One screenshot feature will not roll out this year because of many technical challenges around it – taking screenshots on Xbox One is not as simple as it seems. Even he admits he was initially baffled by why the team could not come up with a viable solution. “We can do video, how hard can it be to just grab a frame of the video?” Spencer says he asked the team jokingly. It turns out that screenshot quality is not the greatest when you simply clip a frame from the video.

Things are looking good however, as the Xbox team seems to be on the verge of breakthrough for this pestering problem. Spencer notes “It’s a little more technically challenging than I thought. Two weeks ago, they think they’ve found a good solution for screenshots. They’re working on it. They know people want it. The team has a path to getting it done, and now it’s just prioritizing.”

Spencer also tells IGN that they are all aware of the slower Xbox One install times and that they are working hard on improving that. He goes as far as saying that it is his personal priority.

Source: IGN

Xbox One October update is live! Brings an improved snap mode, MKV support and much more

Microsoft is rolling out a new system update for the Xbox One, and this One’s pretty big so check out the list below for full details:

New Snap and Friends functions – Stay in the game and in touch with your friends at the same time with improved Snap, SmartGlass and Achievements functions.

  • Snap Updates – We’ve updated the Snap Center to include quick access to many of the things our fans wanted faster access to when playing a game – Friends, Messages, Game DVR, clock, and battery indicator – as well as making it easier to close and open new snap apps when playing a game. A double tap of the Xbox button on your controller will bring up a menu that allows you to open a new app in snap mode, close the current snapped app, or switch focus between your game and your running snapped app. Additionally, two apps have been optimized for Snap mode:
    • Friends Snap App – Access your friends list without leaving the game. Quickly check your friends list to see who’s online right now and take actions like send message, invite or join.
    • Messages Snap App – You’ll be able to open, read and respond to messages in Snap mode, and messages will now be displayed in a threaded conversation view.
  • Achievements App – Updated to enable sharing of achievements you’ve unlocked with captions, see a list of friends who have unlocked specific achievements, and an updated achievements Snap landing page that that shows Achievements on recently played games, when a gamer is not actively playing a game.
  • Friends section – The new Friends section enables you to see at a glance what’s going on with your friends. You can stay up-to-date with their current activities, the most popular games your friends are playing, and a Gamerscore leaderboard to see who has improved their Gamerscore over the last 30 days.
  • New SmartGlass features – You can now see a list of your top games in your profile. You can also see a list of your friend’s most popular games in the Friend’s section of SmartGlass.

Improvements for TV and video:

We’re excited to roll out updates that will make your viewing experience better than ever on Xbox One, whether you want to watch TV or use SmartGlass as a universal remote.

  • Media Player DLNA and MKV support – The latest version of the Media Player app will now have support for DLNA streaming. With this update, you will be able to easily access and play music, watch photo slideshows or movies stored on home media servers and devices that support the DLNA server protocols. Additionally, you will now be able to playback MKV files stored on a USB device or a device on your home network that supports DLNA streaming.
  • Live TV MiniGuide – For markets where OneGuide is available, a new MiniGuide on the bottom of the screen will display details about the TV content that is currently playing. You can quickly change channels, see what’s on other channels, and tune to the previous channel or other recent channels.  While watching TV, you can also launch Miniguide using voice, by saying “Xbox Select – MiniGuide”
  • OneGuide in 11 new countries – Live TV listings and schedules will be made available to customers on Xbox One and SmartGlass for Belgium, Chile, Columbia, Denmark, Finland, Norway, Portugal, Poland, Sweden, Switzerland and Russia in the next few days.
  • Internet TV Apps – Apps with live TV channels can now include their TV listings within OneGuide.  In addition, other Xbox TV features such as channel changing using speech and Miniguide will work with these apps. These features are enabled automatically the first time you sign into a supported app. The first app to support this feature will be Zattoo with an upcoming content update for their app. The Zattoo app is available in Germany, Switzerland, Spain and Denmark.
  • Universal Remote Control in SmartGlass – If you are in one of those 11 countries that are getting OneGuide TV listings, you will also be able use your mobile device to control your Xbox, TV, and/or Cable/Satellite box.
  • Live TV initial setup experience – This update will enable you to select “On start, go to TV” for your Xbox One console.  Additionally, you will be shown a one-time message highlighting this new capability, if you had previously setup Live TV or have not yet set “On start, go to TV” under Settings – Power & startup.
  • Live TV Cable & Satellite Box auto-detection – In select markets the Live TV Setup experience is being improved by attempting to automatically detect the set-top box connected to the HDMI-In port on your Xbox One.


New accessory and “hide” features

We are also excited to roll out a few other cool features this month

  • Updated Devices & Accessories page – To access the new page, go inside Settings, where you can Find, Assign, and Update Xbox One accessories.  You can now more easily “assign” accessories to specific users, such as assigning a headset to a specific gamer.
    • Firmware updates – You can update the firmware for an individual device.
    • Find my Controller – You can also more easily find (or identify) a controller by making it vibrate.
  • Hide Games and Apps on your console – You can now hide items in the “Ready to install” list under My Games and Apps. This is a per-console setting and items will reappear in the list if they are installed again from the Xbox Store. To access the shortcut to temporarily show “hidden” items, press X while holding down both triggers and it will show all hidden items until you exit My Games and Apps.

So there you have it, it looks like the October update is pretty feature packed. Enjoy!

Xbox One October update unveiled with video, significant improvements coming

xbox-one-update

Microsoft has been busy updating the Xbox One lately and adding many great features, although many were needed, it’s still great to see that Microsoft is continually pushing updates at a blistering pace.

The firm has just unveiled their October update, and although being a pretty feature packed update, it’s not as big as September’s update.

Here’s the complete list of features in the October Update.

o    Snap Updates – We’ve updated the Snap Center to include quick access to many of the things our fans wanted faster access to when playing a game – Friends, Messages, Game DVR, clock, and battery indicator – as well as making it easier to close and open new snap apps when playing a game. A double tap of the Xbox button on your controller will bring up a menu that allows you to open a new app in snap mode, close the current snapped app, or switch focus between your game and your running snapped app. Additionally, two apps have been optimized for Snap mode:

  • Friends Snap App – Access your friends list without leaving the game. Quickly check your friends list to see who’s online right now and take actions like send message, invite or join.
  • Messages Snap App – You’ll be able to open, read and respond to messages in Snap mode, and messages will now be displayed in a threaded conversation view.

o    Achievements App – Updated to enable sharing of achievements you’ve unlocked with captions, see a list of friends who have unlocked specific achievements, and an updated achievements Snap landing page that that shows Achievements on recently played games, when a user is not actively playing a game.

o    Friends section – The new Friends section enables you to see at a glance what’s going on with your friends. You can stay up-to-date with their current activities, the most popular games your friends are playing, and a Gamerscore leaderboard to see who has improved their Gamerscore over the last 30 days. The new Friends section has been available for select preview members for a few weeks and now we’re bringing it to everyone in the program, with plans to roll out this feature for all Xbox One owners with the October system update.

o    New SmartGlass features – You can now see a list of your top games in your profile. You can also see a list of your friend’s most popular games in the Friend’s section of SmartGlass.

Improvements for TV and video

o    Media Player DLNA and MKV support – Members of the preview program who have also downloaded the latest version of the Media Player app will now have support for DLNA streaming. With this update, you will be able to easily access and play music, watch photo slideshows or movies stored on home media servers and devices that support the DLNA server protocols. Additionally, you will now be able to playback MKV files stored on a USB device or a device on your home network that supports DLNA streaming.

o    Live TV Trending – Within the next week, you will be able to see what Live TV is trending based on your country and OneGuide settings.  A new tab will be available in OneGuide that displays the top 10 most watched TV shows, with the list filtered down to the shows that are currently available to you based on your OneGuide settings.  You will be able to tune to a specific show by pressing the A button. The Live TV Trending list will be updated approximately every minute, so you can easily discover shows that are popular with other viewers.  This feature will initially be made available to preview users in the U.S., Canada and the UK.

o    Xbox One Digital TV Tuner – Previously announced in August, this new accessory will be available for purchase in UK, France, Germany, Italy and Spain on October 21.  This USB-attached TV Tuner will enable users to watch TV on Xbox One, and pause Live TV for up to 30 minutes.  There are a limited number of preview participants in this program due to hardware requirements needed for testing.

  • Stream TV to SmartGlass – If you have an Xbox One Digital TV Tuner, you will be able to stream TV across your home network to your smartphone or tablet using the Xbox SmartGlass app. You can also pause, play, rewind and change channels, without interrupting gameplay.

o    Live TV MiniGuide – For markets where OneGuide is available, a new MiniGuide on the bottom of the screen will display details about the TV content that is currently playing. You can quickly change channels, see what’s on other channels, and tune to the previous channel or other recent channels.

o    OneGuide in 12 new countries – Live TV listings and schedules will be made available to preview members on Xbox One and SmartGlass for Belgium, Chile, Columbia, Denmark, Finland, Netherlands, Norway, Portugal, Poland, Sweden, Switzerland and Russia in the next few days.

o    Internet TV Apps – Apps with live TV channels can now include their TV listings within OneGuide.  In addition, other Xbox TV features such as channel changing using speech and Miniguide will work with these apps. These features are enabled automatically the first time you sign into a supported app. The first app to support this feature in preview will be Zattoo, a TV provider available in several European markets. We will be sharing more details soon with members of the public preview.

o    Universal Remote Control in SmartGlass – If you are in one of those 12 countries, you will also be able use your mobile device to control your Xbox, TV, and/or Cable/Satellite box.

Other user requested features

o    Updated Devices & Accessories page – To access the new page, go inside Settings, where you can Find, Assign, and Update Xbox One accessories.  You can now more easily “assign” accessories to specific users, such as assigning a headset to a specific gamer.

o    Firmware updates – You can update the firmware for an individual device. And, you can also more easily find (or identify) a controller by making it vibrate.

o    Hide Games & Apps on your console – You can now hide items in the “Ready to install” list under My Games & Apps. This is a per-console setting and items will reappear in the list if they are installed again from the Xbox Store. To access the shortcut to temporarily show “hidden” items, press X while holding down both triggers and it will show all hidden items until you exit My Games & Apps.

Microsoft has done a great job prepping it’s console for the holidays, the friends list has been completely overhauled recently making the  Xbox Live experience feels more social than ever.  This is an important factor when games like, Destiny, COD: Advanced Warfare, and Halo: The Master Chief Collection get released to the public.  These are the games that will populate Xbox Live and get gamers interacting with more of the features Microsoft is adding.

Source: Major Neilson

September update for Xbox One rolling out now with lots of features, including a new media player

Microsoft is rolling  out a pretty big update today for the Xbox One, and it’ll add a whole bunch of great features.  Check out the list below to see what’s included:

  • A new Media Player app: Play media files from an attached USB device with the new media player app – DNLA support for home media servers coming soon. Xbox One will support more formats than Xbox 360, including support for dozens of new file formats like Mpeg 2 TS, animated gifs and MKV, which will be added by the end of the year.
  • Party on in the new and improved Party App: Be the leader of your party with the new party leader setting. As the party leader, you can change whether the party requires invitations and you can remove others from the party. The updated app also lets you see what activities everyone in your party is doing and who is playing in the same game with you in addition to being able to quickly perform common actions like muting, joining, or sending game invites.
  • New features for SmartGlass: You can now post status messages from the Activity Feed and comments, or share items from both your Activity Feed and Game Clips. Along with the new comment and share features, a personalized Activity Feed has been added to your profile and messages have been updated to a new layout supporting a full conversation view. Additionally, we are adding the ability to record game clips directly from the Now Playing bar. Finally, for users who upgrade the app directly, we have introduced a What’s New page highlighting the features of each release.
  • “Xbox On” capabilities in Australia, Canada (French), Italy, Spain, and Mexico: New regions will have the ability to use the “Xbox On” Kinect voice command to power on their consoles when they’re in connected standby (Instant On) mode.
  • OneGuide comes to Brazil, Mexico, Austria, and Ireland: The ability to configure live TV listings will be available to all customers in these four countries. Also coming to these markets is the ability to use OneGuide and the Universal Remote Control in SmartGlass.
  • Boot to TV: Now Xbox One owners will be able to set their console to boot directly to television when coming out of connected standby.
  • Bandwidth Usage Display: Bandwidth Usage will show users how much bandwidth their Xbox One is consuming over a period of time, a useful tool for those who want to track against bandwidth caps set by ISPs in certain markets.
  • GameDVR deletes: Users will be able to choose multiple GameDVR clips to delete at once in the Upload app.
  • Save your Avatar Gamerpic: A new option to save Avatar Gamerpics to users’ OneDrive.

Source: Major Nelson

Large System Update Coming to Xbox One in August


xbox-one-controller1Some time next week, Microsoft will roll out a large update to Xbox One users who have signed up for Developer Preview/early access program – it will come shortly thereafter to all regular users. Xbox team has done a great job at listening to consumer feedback as features and enhancements in this update release are mainly user request-driven.

The update contains social features to make sharing your gaming experiences with friends better and easier as well as low battery notification popup and “last seen time” in friends list, to name a few. Here is the full list of features coming in this Xbox One system update.

Activity feed updates: We’re adding new ways for you to interact with friends in the activity feed. The interface will change to a single column scrolling list that is longer and includes more content. We’ll add the ability to post text to your feed, and to “like” and comment on feed items. You can share game clips and anything else in the feed with friends either publically (to your activity feed) or privately (as an attachment to a message). You’ll also be notified when anyone likes, comments on or shares your items. Each user will get a personal feed on their profile, so you can see what specific friends have been up to. And, with SmartGlass, you can see what your friends have shared to their activity feed and “like” specific posts (additional activity feed support coming in future SmartGlass updates).

Expanded Friends area on Home: Right from Home, see what’s going on with your friends. Stay up-to-date with their current activity, the top trending games your friends are playing, and a leaderboard to see who has been working the hardest on their Gamerscore. We’re doing an extended preview on this, rolling it into the early access preview this month to a subset of our preview audience so we can refine it until it’s ready for the entire Xbox One market.

Mobile purchase: One of the most requested features on Xbox Feedback. Using Xbox SmartGlass or on Xbox.com, you can remotely purchase games and Add-on content. No more waiting to begin downloading when you get home – if your console is set to automatically take updates, your console will begin downloading your purchase.

Low battery notification: You asked for it, now a notification will pop up when your controller battery is getting low.

Disable notifications during video: Adding the ability to turn off notifications based feedback we heard from you.

Enabling 3D Blu-ray: An update to the Blu-ray player app will enable 3D Blu-ray functionality on Xbox One.

OneGuide in Brazil, Mexico, Austria and Ireland: Live TV listings can be configured for four new countries as part of this month’s Preview program. And now there is an OneGuide Issue Reporter available under the TV & OneGuide settings, Troubleshooting section.

Last seen time in Friends list: Direct from Xbox Feedback, the friends list will now show how long it’s been since a friend has been online. For example, “Last seen 20m ago: Forza Motorsport 5.”

Source: Microsoft/Xbox