Xbox One October update adds new Avatars, Alexa controls, Dolby Vision HDR

Xbox One Update Brings Amazon Alexa Integration, Next-Gen Avatars, Dolby Vision

Microsoft's promised overhaul of their Xbox Avatars is finally here, coming as part of the October Update for Xbox One that is rolling out right now.

The new avatars include a lot of neat options previously not included, like prosthetic limbs and mobility aids, which allow them to represent a wider range of players more accurately. You can now choose to have your Xbox Avatar across your entire Xbox One profile and console, and even use it as your gamerpic. You'll also see Avatars on activity feed posts, friend blocks on the Home screen, gamerscore leaderboards, club headers, profile comparisons, etc. Microsoft is also launching a new Xbox Avatar Store where you will be able to buy Avatar items and accessories for your favourite games like Halo, Gears of War, etc.

The new update should be available now through your console, although your device will eventually update automatically. And if you don't like the new Xbox Avatar, Microsoft will let you get back your original Xbox Avatar by simply switching to the Xbox Original Avatar through the Xbox Avatar Editor.

This includes the implementation of "Xbox Skill" for Amazon Alexa and Cortana in the U.S., enabling ayone with a voice recognition doodad to navigate and interact with their Xbox using an Alexa or Cortana-enabled device. With the Xbox Skill, people can use voice commands to power on/off their console, adjust volume, launch games and apps, start and stop broadcasts on Mixer, capture screenshots, and more. To set up Cortana, say, "Hey Cortana, open Xbox". Look for the Xbox Skill in the Alexa Skill Store or the Cortana Skill Store to get started, and it's easy to set up from there.

You can see more about this update in the video above. Microsoft will be bringing Dolby Vision support to more apps in the future. For those unfamiliar, Dolby Vision is Dolby's proprietary format for HDR video, and you'll need a compatible TV set to take advantage of it. Dolby Vision on Netflix with a premium subscription will be supported at launch with more Dolby Vision apps adding support in the coming months. Diving into the console's advanced video settings, a single checkbox enables the feature.

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