Microsoft has been on a roll these last few weeks, announcing updates and features for members of the Xbox One Preview Program at a rapid pace. With all of that activity it’s was easy to forget that normal users, that is Xbox One owners who haven’t signed up for the program, hadn’t gotten an update since July. Microsoft is now addressing that small issue. Today the company began sending out the August Xbox One Update to users.
Microsoft announced that it was rolling out the August Xbox One update to normal users this week on its Xbox Wire news blog, formally bringing the release cycle for the update to an end.
The August Xbox One Update adds mobile purchasing so that users can pick up full video games and add-ons without actually being in front of their console. To allow Xbox One owners to take advantage of the feature, this update also enables the Xbox One to automatically download new purchases when the console is in its low-power state. Today’s post about the update insists users need to have their Xbox One setup to automatically download software updates for this mobile purchasing system to work. Users can purchase games and add-on content from the Xbox One SmartGlass app for iPhone, iPad, Android, Windows and Windows Phone.
For years Xbox Live has been a social network, a way for users to easily connect with other users. That being said, prior versions of Xbox Live has always been about connecting in video games for multiplayer or over the service’s voice chat system. Those are still there, however the August Xbox One Update adds some more obvious ways for users to communicate. After the update users can share status updates on the console to their friends, they can also share other’s statuses and comment on statuses too. Just think Facebook or Twitter and you’ve got the right idea.
3D Blu-ray support, the option to disable notifications when the Xbox One is playing back video and a low-battery notification for controllers are also included in the August Xbox One Update. To be clear, what’s not included in the update are all the features Microsoft announced for Xbox One Preview Program participants late last week.
With the September Xbox One Update Microsoft is adding a new Friends area to the home screen of the console. Users can also expect a new media app for playing video and audio from a USB flash drive or hard drive too. The ability to delete multiple GameDVR clips and track how much bandwidth the Xbox One consumes is also included. As the name suggests, Xbox Ones that aren’t enrolled in the preview program should expect this update to arrive sometime in September, if Microsoft stays true to form.
Beyond the few changes in the Friends app and the new downloading options, users shouldn’t notice a ton of differences after their console has been successfully updated. Microsoft gradually rolls out new Xbox One updates to systems that are configured for background updates.
Users with automatic updates enabled will find that their console has been updated without them having to do a thing. Xbox Ones not enrolled in the Xbox One Preview Program will need to go into the console’s Settings app and select System from the list of options. If the update is ready they’ll see an Update option in the bottom left corner of their screen.
Users who have the Xbox One’s low power mode disabled will not be able to use the Xbox One SmartGlass apps to automatically download new games and add-ons to their system when not at home. Again, the feature depends on automatic updates and low-power mode being on.