Thursday, March 31, 2016

Xbox news from Microsoft Build Developers Conference today

A message from the Microsoft Build Developers Conference which kicked off  in San Francisco, Calif., with Head of Xbox, Phil Spencer speaking directly to developers about the following opportunities on Xbox One and Windows 10.
  • · New UWP updates. Phil highlighted that PC game developers will have access to a fully open ecosystem with UWP, with multiple paths provided to deliver both Win32 games as well as UWP titles, the ability to distribute their title in any store desired as well as more predictable performance for features such as modding, overlays, multiple GPUs, and more. 
  • · Xbox Dev Mode. Today we announced Xbox Dev Mode, which transforms any retail Xbox One into a dev kit, available today in preview and coming to all Xbox One owners with the Windows 10 Anniversary Update this summer. Developers of all shapes and sizes will be able to use Xbox Dev Mode to build and test UWP apps and games on their retail Xbox One console. Because Dev Mode is in a preview environment today, we recommend only experienced developers engage with Dev Mode at this time.
  • · Gaming and the Windows 10 Anniversary Update. With the upcoming Windows 10 Anniversary Update, we will be enabling even more gaming features across Xbox One and Windows 10. More features will be unveiled in the coming months but developers and gamers can expect to see:
    • Xbox and Windows Store convergence. The best of the Xbox Store comes together with the best of the Windows Store beginning this summer with the Windows 10 Anniversary Update. The store will work across all devices in the ecosystem and provide developers more choice in how and where they deliver their content and monetize their customers. New support will include features that game developers have come to expect and require from Xbox One into the Windows Store including support for bundles, season passes, pre-orders and more. 
    • Cortana on Xbox One. When Cortana arrives on Xbox One with the Windows 10 Anniversary Update, gamers can expect the familiar Cortana experience found on other Windows 10 devices. Cortana will get smarter over time to become your personal gaming assistant and help you find great new games, new challenges or help you with tips and tricks. More specific details to come.
    • Background Music. The Windows 10 Anniversary Update lays the foundation for most requested fan features like background music. Background music is the ability to listen to music from Xbox One apps in the background while you’re doing another activity on the console. This means your music will be played without the app being in Snap mode.
You can read more about all the news from Microsoft at Build day one at 2016, and more on the Xbox news at, posting a little later.

Are you interested in joining the Xbox Dev Mode preview? There are a few important points you need to be aware of if you or a colleague want to try out Xbox Dev Mode while it’s in preview. Because this is a preview environment, we recommend only experienced developers try out Dev Mode at this time – it will change the way your console operates and, at this time, may remove content you currently have downloaded. Here are a few things to know and to do to join the preview.
  • 1. You cannot join the Xbox Dev Mode developer preview if you are currently enrolled in any other Xbox One preview group, this includes the Xbox One System Update Preview Program. You can opt-out of the System Update Preview Program through the Xbox Preview Dashboard app.
  • 2. You must first join the Windows Insider Program and download the latest Windows Insider SDK Preview release on a Windows 10 PC.
  • 3. You must download and install Visual Studio 2015 Update 2 on your Windows 10 PC.
  • 4. Download and run the Dev Mode Activation app from the Xbox store on your console to gain access to the Dev Mode software that will be made available to you as a member of the Dev Preview Group.
  • 5. When you run the app you will receive an activation code.
  • 6. Create a Windows Developer Center account through a PC web browser at This requires a one-time cost of $19 USD for a personal account. Accept the terms and conditions, and enter that activation code; this gives your Xbox One the entitlement to join the Dev Preview Group.
  • 7. Your console will download a system update and may reboot during installation.
  • 8. Once downloaded, go back to the Dev Mode Activation app to finish activating Dev Mode on your retail Xbox One, transforming it into a dev kit; your console will reboot again and the process will be complete.
  • 9. While your retail console is in Dev Mode, you will not be able to run your existing Xbox One games or apps. To play your games or apps again, disable Dev Mode to return the console into Retail Mode and play again.
Post by Vikki
Twitter: ProfessorWhite
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