Each month since launch, the Xbox One has received a software update meant to teach the console a few new tricks.
So far, these updates have primarily served to fix bugs, tweak the UI, and reintroduce things that were inexplicably absent after the jump from Xbox 360 to Xbox One — things like external HDD support, automatic account sign-in, and alerts when your friends sign in.
The best news of the next update? Your controller will give you a heads-up before it dies, rather than just conking out in the middle of an epic battle.
Here’s what’s coming in the August update:
- Low Battery Notifications: While the One has been able to tell you how much juice was left in your controller since February, it wasn’t very proactive about it. If you weren’t checking in regularly, it was pretty easy to find yourself with a dead controller in the middle of a shoot-out. It’ll now throw up alerts when the juice is gettin’ low, so you know when it’s time to swap.
- Mobile purchase: You can now buy games/apps through Xbox SmartGlass or Xbox.com, and it’ll turn your console on, start the download, and turn it back off when it’s done. Handy if you’re at work and want to get a new game queued up for when you get home.
- Notifications (like friend sign-in alerts and game invites) can be set to not appear while video is playing
- Last Time Seen Online: Your friends list will now tell you when your buddies were last online, and what game they were playing at the time
- Your Friends screen will now show the games that are most popular amongst your friends right now (a clever way to bump up game sales), a highscore board of recent gamerscore growth, and a running feed of your friend’s activity (showing things like games played, videos uploaded, etc. in a tweet-stream-esque list). You’ll be able to like, comment on, and reshare each item, and post status updates like “I’ll be playing Hello Kitty Island Adventure tonight at 9. Be there!”. Seems like Microsoft is trying to work out just how social people want to be about their gaming when they’re not actually, you know, playing a game.
- 3D Blu-Ray support
- OneGuide (Microsoft’s live TV guide thing) support in Brazil, Mexico, Ireland, and Austria
As he does each month, Microsoft’s Major Nelson has released a video breaking down the new goods: