Rolling out to a subset of preview program members in waves starting this weekend is the first hands-on look at the new Xbox One experience. At its core, the new Xbox One interface is centered around making it quick and easy for you to access and discover what you want, when you want. Our focus for the completely redesigned dashboard is speed, ease of use, and—of course—fan feedback.
The team at Xbox had a packed summer sharing what’s coming to Xbox One at E3 2015 and gamescom 2015, along with contributing to the launch of the best version of Windows ever for gaming: Windows 10. Throughout the summer, droves of Xbox fans have logged in and provided excellent feedback on Xbox One updates and the Xbox app on Windows 10. Today, we’re excited to take another step forward in bringing our vision to life for a new Xbox One experience.
This entirely new user experience is a work-in-progress and will undergo rigorous updating and polishing with the help of our Xbox One preview members. Here’s a closer look at what’s coming slowly to select early preview members in the first wave over the next week:
A redesigned Home to help you truly jump in. While keeping the main section concentrated on your task at hand (say, getting back to playing Gears of War: Ultimate Edition), we’re introducing vertical scrolling and a rearranged interface to provide faster and easier access to your most-recently accessed games and apps. You can also easily share your achievements and clips with the Xbox Live community, see whether your friends are playing the same games, and enjoy one-click access to Game Hubs to get news and updates from the publishers themselves. Engaging socially on Xbox One just got a lot quicker.
Quickly jump to Pins and My Games and Apps. At the bottom of Home, you’ll have quick access to the games and apps that you have pinned. You can quickly jump between your pins and most recently played game by using the triggers on your controller. Right trigger will take you straight to your pins. A pull of the left trigger will take you back to your most recently played game or app.
A new guide for fast access to essentials. A new Guide lets you quickly access essentials with just one button press, and without leaving your game, to save time spent weaving in and out of apps. You can access the Guide from Home by pressing left or double tap the Xbox button on your controller to instantly overlay the Guide.
- Friends and Parties – See which of your friends are online, join their parties, or click a button to instantly start a party and then add friends to it.
- Notifications – Instead of having to go back to Home to launch the Notifications Center full screen, new notifications will show up directly in the Guide and be grouped to make them quicker and easier to navigate.
- Messages – Just like notifications, multiple messages from a given friend will be both quickly accessible from the guide and neatly grouped.
- Settings – Frequently-accessed settings like headset volume will be up-leveled in the settings section of the guide to make them quicker to get to in the guide while you are playing a game.
- Snap – You now access your snap apps from the guide. In addition, apps snap to the left instead of the right.
OneGuide is your single destination for TV, movies, and video apps. Anchored to the right of Home, OneGuide is the place to quickly and easily see what’s trending on live TV and what’s new to stream across your favorite apps. With the new OneGuide, you’ll spend less time browsing and more time watching.
- Live TV – Keeping with our focus on speed, OneGuide’s TV listings come up instantly and in full-screen, showing more channels at once. We also added picture-in-picture mode for TV, so you can browse OneGuide without missing what’s happening in your show.
- Movies and TV shows – Explore more movies and TV shows with dedicated galleries, highlighting the best that Xbox has to offer from live TV and apps.
- App channels – Discover new things to watch through curated channels of streaming video from apps like Hulu and FOX NOW. Accessible from the dashboard and throughout OneGuide, app channels help you find what to watch faster.
A new, easier to navigate Store. To the right of OneGuide, the new and improved Store features:
- Four easy to access areas – Games, Movies and TV, Apps, and Music will have more real estate on the main Store page dedicated to surfacing top content to you.
- New vertical gallery view – Using Games as an example, the all-new vertical gallery view within each area affords more listings to be showcased at a glance and the listings themselves are optimized for easier browsing with intuitive categories like Featured Staff Picks, New Releases, Top Played, Top Rated, Coming Soon and Recommendations.
With the New Xbox One Experience, we’re optimizing our design and layouts for speed, which means changes to the existing UI and features. Inspired by fan feedback and usage data, we’ve made your experience more intuitive by reducing button-presses, jumps and load times. A few examples of how we’re doing this are:
- Game Hubs – With more entry points throughout the new experience, the new Game Hubs provide similar content as the current Game Hubs but by changing the design we have improved discoverability and speed.
- Game DVR – You’ll now go to the Game DVR app, instead of the Upload app, to manage your clips and screenshots.
- Achievements – Your game progress can be viewed on your profile and you’ll find achievements in the Game Hub for each game. If you want to track achievement progress in real time while you are playing, you can do that by snapping the Achievement Tracker app.
This first preview wave is just the beginning of delivering the New Xbox One Experience and Xbox One Backward Compatibility this fall. Between now and November, we look forward to taking Xbox One preview program members along the journey with us, rolling out new builds to preview and soliciting your feedback with the end goal of releasing the New Xbox One experience that you’ve been asking for. We’ll have more to share in the coming weeks, so please stay tuned and keep the feedback coming!