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article imageMicrosoft begins first preview release of Windows 10 for Xbox One

By James Walker     Sep 19, 2015 in Entertainment
Microsoft has begun rolling out the first preview of the new Windows 10-powered Xbox One experience. The interface has been rebuilt from the ground up to make accessing content easier, faster and more responsive.
Yesterday, some lucky Xbox One Preview members got the chance to have a first try of the update on their own consoles. The work-in-progress preview is rolling out in waves to members who have opted-in to receiving Xbox One New Experience updates.
The most immediately noticeable change will be the redesigned interface, introduced by Xbox's Larry Hryb (Major Nelson) in a video tour. Home has been reworked from the ground up to make content clearer and more visible. The old horizontally-scrolling wall of tiles has been replaced with a smoother and faster vertical page of news on game updates, friend activity and achievement progress.
Accessing Game Hubs is now a one-click process. Pinned content and the My Games and My Apps screens can be accessed by pulling the left and right triggers on the controller. Navigation speed is a key emphasis of the update as many Xbox One owners have long noted how social engagement can currently take several keypresses and then waiting at loading screens.
This focus is evident in the new Guide, accessible by a double-tap of the Xbox button while in any game. You don't need to leave the current app to view incoming notifications, messages and friend updates. Parties can be joined, key settings like headset volume adjusted and apps snapped, all without diverting away from the action on-screen.
The separate OneGuide, just a tap away from Home, makes it easy to find new TV, movies and apps to try out. The Xbox Store is now divided into Games, Movies and TV, Apps and Music, just like the Store app on Windows 10. The content discovery process has been streamlined, like the rest of the interface.
Elsewhere, improvements have been made to the design of Game Hubs to increase browsing speed and make the information they contain more accessible. The old Upload app has been rebranded and upgraded as Game DVR, providing similar functionality to the feature in the Windows 10 Desktop app. It still supports the recording, trimming and uploading of screenshots and video clips at any time.
This is just the first stage of the new Windows 10-powered Xbox One Experience. Microsoft is eager to obtain feedback from preview users to ensure that the update released in November to all Xbox One owners will be the most polished Xbox interface ever.
With Windows 10 under the hood and more similarities than ever to the PC gaming features now provided by the Xbox app on Windows 10, Microsoft's console gaming fans are only a few months away from a faster, more navigation-friendly console. The update should be available just in time for the all-important holiday season.
More about Microsoft, Windows, windows 10, Xbox, xbox one
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