Microsoft shows off all the new features they added to the Xbox One since launch

Joseph Finney

Microsoft shows off all the new features they added to the Xbox One since launchMicrosoft has been extremely diligent when it comes to delivering meaningful updates to the Xbox One. These updates have been ordered to align with how the Xbox One community voted on the UserVoice website. Some of the improvements have been obvious, like custom backgrounds, low battery indicators, external storage support, and boot to TV, but the important thing is that Microsoft is paying attention.

Microsoft’s motto lately seems to be to deliver requested features as fast and frequent as possible. This has been the case with Windows Phone, Windows 10, and most of all, the Xbox One. Many Microsoft products have their own UserVoice page where users can suggest and vote on features they want to see included in updates. This gives Microsoft a direct look into the priorities of their passionate fans.

Here is a complete list of added features this year, provided by Xbox Live’s Major Nelson:

February Updates

1.    See and manage your storage space
2.    Control your install lineup and more easily manage your download queue
3.    Separate My Games and My Apps lists so you can easily create separate queues for both
4.    Track how much battery life is left on your controller
5.    Support for your USB keyboard with your Xbox One

March Updates

6.    Friends list moved to front and center on the homepage of the Friends app
7.    Party chat turns on by default
8.    Chat with friends playing different games
9.    “Invite friends to game” option available in your multiplayer titles
10.    See a list of “Recent Players” 
11.    Twitch live streaming support
12.    Optical out supports 5.1 Dolby Digital
13.    Support for Dolby Digital surround sound over HDMI
14.    Support for 50Hz output for TV
15.    Tailor the number of volume up/down adjustments
16.    SmartGlass updates: Receive notifications of Xbox Live messages, check out what your friends are doing, see their latest highlight clips, and unsnap apps with SmartGlass
17.    Support for new Xbox One accessories: Xbox One Stereo Headset and Adapter, Xbox One Media Remote, and third party headsets
18.    Browser improvements: Direct link to IE, new gesture and controller features for Bing and Google maps, and search improvements
19.    IR blasting of power and volume to TVs/AVRs for all regions
20.    Easy sound bar setup
21.    View Game Clips in Snap mode
22.    Passkey feature to protect user settings

April Updates

23.    Support for 50Hzoutput for Blu-ray
24.    Controller and headset adaptor firmware updates that reduce audio static and improve wireless connectivity
25.    Silent reboot after system updates and system update on demand
26.    Improved GameDVR video quality through compression algorithm improvements
27.    Kinect voice and motion improvements for quality and reliability of Xbox One commands
28.    Game save progress bar shows the status of your game saves
29.    See what games and apps are being updated or have been updated recently
30.    Notifications to see when favorites and friends sign in to Xbox Live
31.    Friends who are in multiplayer are identified in the friends list

May Updates

32.    Sound Mixer for apps in Snap mode
33.    Volume control when using Kinect with chat
34.    Opt-in to help improve speech recognition
35.    Take the next system update when you want

June Updates

36.    External storage support
37.    The ability to add your real name
38.    OneGuide and Universal Remote Control added to SmartGlass
39.    Select an account for automatic sign-in
40.    For Xbox One owners in Canada and Europe, access to OneGuide and more TV, SmartGlass, and voice features
41.    Games with Gold & Deals with Gold
42.    All Xbox Live members can access popular gaming and entertainment apps without a Gold membership

July Updates

43.    Snap Mode for Achievements
44.    Double-tap to launch Snap Center
45.    Choice of spoken language in New Zealand, Ireland, and Austria
46.    Background updates for future digital bundles and compilation discs
47.    Ability to like GameDVR clips

August Updates

48.    Activity feed updates: New ways for you to interact with friends in the activity feed
49.    Mobile purchase from SmartGlass or
50.    Low battery notification
51.    Disable notifications during video
52.    Enabling 3D Blu-ray
53.    OneGuide in Brazil, Mexico, Austria and Ireland
54.    Last seen time in Friends list
55.    Pre-order and pre-download titles

September Updates

56.    Expanded Friends area on Home
57.    A new Media Player app for USB and DLNA playback
58.    Improved Party app with party leader settings
59.    New features for SmartGlass: Post status messages from the Activity Feed and comments, share items from both your Activity Feed and Game Clips, personalized Activity Feed added to your profile, threaded messages, record game clips directly from the Now Playing bar, What’s New page highlighting the features of each release
60.    “Xbox On” capabilities in Australia, Canada (French), Italy, Spain, Mexico and Brazil
61.    Boot directly to television when coming out of connected standby  
62.    Manage controllers and other accessories under Settings – Devices & Accessories
63.    Bandwidth Usage shows users how much bandwidth their Xbox One is consuming over a period of time
64.    Choose multiple GameDVR clips to delete at once in the Upload app
65.    Save Avatar Gamerpics to users’ OneDrive

October Updates

66.    Snap Center updated to include quick access to Friends, Messages, Achievements, Game DVR, clock and battery indicator
67.    Friends Snap App 
68.    Messages Snap App 
69.    Achievements App 
70.    See a list of top games in your profile and your friend’s most popular games in the Friend’s section of SmartGlass
71.    Improvements for TV and video 
72.    Media Player DLNA and MKV support 
73.    Live TV Trending based on your country and OneGuide settings 
74.    USB-attached Xbox One Digital TV Tuner available in Europe (UK, France, Germany, Italy, and Spain)
75.    Stream TV to SmartGlass with the Xbox One Digital TV Tuner
76.    Live TV MiniGuide for markets where OneGuide is available 
77.    OneGuide in 12 new countries 
78.    Apps with live TV channels include their TV listings within OneGuide and other Xbox TV features work with these apps
79.    Universal remote control in SmartGlass 
80.    Live TV initial setup experience 
81.    Live TV cable & satellite box auto-detection 
82.    Updated Devices & Accessories page 
83.    Firmware updates 
84.    Find my Controller to easily find (or identify) a controller by making it vibrate
85.    Hide Games & Apps on your console
86.    Password resets and added protection made easier

November Updates

87.    Custom backgrounds 
88.    Share your location and bio as part of your profile and select a set of showcase items that are displayed 
89.    Tweet about your favorite game clips 
90.    Live TV Trending 
91.    Twitter TV Trending 
92.    Xbox TV Trending 
93.    Tweets in MiniGuide 
94.    Recents and Favorites in MiniGuide 
95.    Store pages on Xbox One improved to quickly browse and find content
96.    Friends’ game activity on SmartGlass 
97.    Games with Gold & Deals with Gold on SmartGlass 
98.    SmartGlass Store improved to easily find and download apps for your Xbox One, and a Coming Soon filter for Games and Add Ons 
99.    Easily snap from a full screen experience and move Internet Explorer into snap mode 
100.    Internet Explorer featured sites 
101.    My Stats shared in Preview dashboard 
102.    Leaderboard added that shows how you stack up against your friends 

While all of these improvements to Xbox One are great, it feels like there is a single massive feature looming over the gaming console; apps. Microsoft has been talking about universal apps at every event they have, and they include Xbox in that discussion. Developers can build their apps to support Windows Phone, Windows, and Xbox with a single solution. While this is great news, it has yet to be seen working on an Xbox.

With Windows 10, Microsoft showed off a concept of different user experiences for different screen sizes, and included in this was the Xbox. Does this mean that the Xbox will get universal apps when the OS is upgraded to Windows 10? Microsoft hasn’t said a word on how they plan to open the door for apps to begin running on the Xbox One but it will be interesting to see how they do it.