Some big changes are coming to the Xbox One. Microsoft will introduce them all to the Xbox One community at large when its Creators Update arrives in the spring, though in the meantime gamers who are members of Microsoft's Xbox Insider Preview program can take an early look at some of the feature upgrades by downloading the latest Insider update. If you're a member and don't see it yet, hang tight—Microsoft starting rolling out the update to a small subset of gamers on Monday and will make it available to all other Insiders in the coming weeks.
"For gamers, the Creators Update is about performance, people, competition and streaming – getting you to the things you care about most as quickly as possible. Today, that will mean a faster Xbox One experience than ever before, connecting you with the applications, games and of course, friends, that you enjoy most," Microsoft stated in a blog post.
Microsoft's aim to improve performance on the Xbox One starts with an updated UI. Gamers have complained that certain tasks are too complex on the console and require too much digging and button presses. To address that, Microsoft revamped the dashboard's Home with speed optimizations and visual changes. For example, when you're playing a game you'll see a smaller icon than before with a few options to dig deeper into the Game Hub, interact with your Club or LFG for that particular game, view achievements, and so forth.
The Creators Update will also introduce a faster and more intuitive Guide to Xbox One. A single button press on the controller brings up a newly enhanced Guide overlay on the left side of the screen no matter what you're doing, even when playing a game. This provides quick access to screenshots, background music controls, and some nifty DVR capabilities that will be of interest to broadcasters.
"In addition to quick access to music, screen shots and GameDVR will be one button press away. You can bring up Guide and press “X” or “Y” on your controller to record your favorite gaming moments," Microsoft added.
One of the more interesting upgrades is a new Copilot feature that allows two controllers to act as one. This will make the Xbox One more accessible to people with disabilities by adding the option for unique controller configurations, such as using a hand and chin, hand and foot, or whatever the case might be. And whether someone has a disability or not, the second controller can be used by someone else to help gamers play through challenging areas that they might be stuck on.
These are just some of the features that will arrive with Creators Update when it rolls out to Windows 10 devices in the spring. Microsoft has not given a specific release date yet, though it's expected to arrive in April.