The Xbox One Is Turning Your Phone Into the Only Remote You Need
If you have cable, the Xbox One's TV-controlling powers are a great feature; having a list of just the channels you watch is how all cable-surfing should be. But if you have cable, you probably also have a DVR, and the Xbox One has been useless at controlling it. Until now.
With updates rolling out to Xbox One users in the near future, Microsoft is adding DVR control to Smartglass by way of emulating a touchscreen version of the cable box remote you love to hate on your phone or tablet. That's great—no more fumbling around the couch cushions—but unfortunately there's no One Guide-esque menu to freshen up your list of recorded shows; you just have a new way to browse it. Still, it's a step in the right direction.
And speaking of One Guide, the cable-channel menu you want and deserve is also coming to Smartglass, effectively turning any and all of your touchscreen devices into supersmart remotes, and giving the Xbox One more TV-powers that you don't have to open your mouth and say "Xbox!" to use. That is always welcome.
These minor-but-awesome updates will definitely help the Xbox One solidify its position as the most powerful (if also the most expensive) set-top box out there. With DVR control, your phone should become the only remote you need unless you have to change inputs or do some weird picture calibration or something.
The continued rollout of more features means that hopefully the Xbox One's media powers will only get better. Now if only folks making those god-awful cable boxes would take a hint and start working on this stuff themselves.