Xbox One’s big backwards compatibility update arrives November 12th

27 Oct 2015 | Author: | No comments yet »

Console wars: Predicting this holiday season’s gaming winner.

Microsoft’s Phil Spencer has just announced that the new Xbox One experience will be coming to all Xbox One owners on the 12th of November, just two weeks from now.During a live stream to promote the launch of Halo 5: Guardians, Xbox chief Phil Spencer revealed that the console will receive a major update on November 12, which comprises a brand-new user interface alongside the highly anticipated backward compatibility feature, which will allow users to play selected Xbox 360 games via emulation. This week, the company that charged into home entertainment hardware with Xbox in 2001 is looking to regain its dominance in the industry with the latest edition of its storied Halo franchise. “I think that Halo has the DNA to have the global impact that Star Wars does,” said Bonnie Ross, head of 343 Industries, the studio responsible for the lucrative franchise, in an interview Friday. “But you have to think in decades.” It won’t be an easy feat for Ms.

This new experience has been trialled for a while now to a select group of users who have enrolled in the Xbox One’s Preview Program to help Microsoft squash bugs and refine different features. The update promises to bring a faster performance to the Xbox One, along with an all-new guide, a better organised storefront and “expanded social content” that will include Game Hubs and a Community area that allows users to view their friends’ activity feeds. Backwards compatibility is without doubt the main attraction of the update, however, and over 100 Xbox 360 titles are expected to be supported at launch. The increasingly fast pace of change in the technology and entertainment industries has spawned fierce competition for giants such as Microsoft, and gamers hungry for innovative experiences don’t hesitate to take their complaints to social media when their expectations aren’t met. “The biggest change is in the overall business model and how consumers are experiencing entertainment,” explained Ms.

Ross, who sees big opportunity in her belief that “everyone is a gamer.” She credits Apple and the iTunes Store for obliterating the stigma previously associated with the lifestyle: “It’s not just a small subsection of people in their basements.” The Halo franchise itself is worth $4.6-billion (U.S.), with more than 65 million games sold across 15 titles, and spans a variety of entertainment channels, including comics, novels and toys. The decision made clear what the price cut was desired to do: get gamers who have not yet moved to the company’s latest console to take the plunge this holiday season. “If you haven’t made the jump yet, and you’re starting early on your holiday wish list, I have good news—we’re dropping the price of the PlayStation 4 system in the U.S. and Canada,” Sony Computer Entertainment America vice president of platforms marketing John Koller wrote in a blog post this month.

While a feature film and a prime-time television series have been scrapped, for now, dramatic radio plays and both animated and live-action video miniseries have helped build the mythology of the Halo universe, which is set 500 years from now and features interplanetary rebellion, aliens and superhuman warriors. To play the new Halo, which hits shelves on Tuesday and was developed internally and exclusively for Xbox One, fans who don’t already have the new console will have to get one. But while Microsoft is not publicly announcing sales of the platform, Phil Spencer, who runs the company’s gaming division, admitted earlier this month that Sony has “a huge lead.” In July, the Tokyo-based company revealed it had sold 25.3 million PlayStation 4s since the console launched in November, 2013, a week before Xbox One hit shelves.

With Cortana, Xbox One will still be navigable via generic voice commands that users have become used to such as, “Xbox record that!” and “Xbox Pause” but Cortana will now bring a more varied functions to the console that can complete all the tasks asked of her in the same way she does on a Windows PC or mobile phone. Today, with the explosion of mobile gaming and virtual reality on the horizon, the way people play games and their expectations of them have fundamentally changed. Over the last several weeks, Microsoft has unveiled a slew of bundles, ranging from its high-end Elite Bundle, which will go for $499, to cheaper options like its The Lego Movie bundle for $349. Halo 5’s Warzone mode, for example, allows for 24 players to play with and against each other in a virtual space in what can be described as a multiplayer mayhem extravaganza. “There’s always going to be a place for fantastic, single-player experiences,” added Mr. Microsoft reasons that offering its game console, a controller, and at least one game to consumers will ultimately prove more popular and provide a deal no competitor can match. “This holiday, Xbox is offering unmatched value and choice for gamers with a diverse mix of bundles starting at $349,” the company said in a statement last month. “The holidays are just around the corner and with more Xbox One options this year, there’s never been a better time to buy.” Console wars have been going on for years, and they can get bloody when stakes are high.

Doing so, he said, fundamentally changes the game. “It becomes this social bonding experience between friends adventuring together throughout the course of the story,” he said. Designers from 343 were brought in by the Windows development team to help with the design of Cortana, the digital assistant embedded in recent Microsoft operating systems, because, said Ms.

Nadella understands that game developers have intimate relationships with their consumers and it’s something he is spreading throughout the company. “With gaming, people don’t need us.

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