Microsoft is rolling out the October update for the Xbox One, implementing many new features to Snap, Achievements, SmartGlass and more that aim to "take advantage of the multitasking capabilities" of the hardware. Like all previous updates, Microsoft claims that community feedback was taken into account to help shape and develop the update, while continuing to encourage people to keep submitting feedback whenever they feel the need.
New Snap Center controls now allow users to access other apps faster than before by simply double tapping the Xbox button on the controller. Upon doing so, a menu will pop up, where you'll be able to open, close or switch between your game and whatever app is open at the time; be it the Friends list, Messages, Game DVR, clock, or battery indicator.
Updates to the Friends Snap app enables users to view and interact with the friends list without leaving the game and will display information like the most popular game being played by your friends; the Messages App will now show messages in a new, threaded conversation view, which should make reading while playing easier. And for those of you that are still big on Achievements, previously unlocked ones can be shared using captions, and a new list can be viewed that shows friends that have managed to unlock specific achievements.
Proceeding on to TV and video, the most notable additions are the long-awaited DLNA media player and .MKV file support. This now enables the ability to stream media from a DLNA supported home media server to the Xbox One, or access .MKV files via a USB device. Furthermore, users can now control the console, TV, or cable box thanks to the new Universal Remote Control feature added to SmartGlass. This may be particularly useful to those that don't want to buy the Xbox One Media Remote, but want to use something other than a controller.
The Devices & Accessories page has also been updated this month, making it much easier to assign things like controllers and headsets to specific players. The newly implemented "Find my Controller" feature aids in identifying which controller belongs to a player by making it vibrate; although, this could still be a problem, should multiple controllers in use look exactly the same. Another new feature lets users hide games and apps in the “Ready to install” list under My Games and Apps. Keep in mind that this feature is per-console, and hidden items will return if re-installed.
Finally, Microsoft has taken to improving password protection, including the process that is resetting the password. Beginning later this month, Xbox Live account holders that have yet to set up additional security information will be approached and asked to provide a secondary email address or cell phone number in case the need to reset a password arises. This is a one-time thing and is can be done at https://account.live.com/proofs/.
There's a lot going on in this October update for the Xbox One and users can expect to receive more free updates in the future. Just last week, the company announced that dashboard customization will come to the system, and while a date wasn't specified, expect it to at least come to the platform beta program for people to test out. If you've yet to apply the newest update, be sure to check the system settings as soon as you can.
The Xbox One is finally closer to becoming the system it needed to be a year ago (although this launch parity clause needs to go) and hence, is a more appealing product for this holiday season rather than last year's, especially with the current fall 2014 and early 2015 game lineups. It's smart for Microsoft to launch this big update just after announcing the new Assassin's Creed Xbox One bundles - and after news pointed towards the system potentially outselling the PS4 in September.
Source: Major Nelson