Microsoft shows off Xbox One's dashboard UI behind closed doors

Ever since the first reveal of the Xbox One in May, Microsoft has only offered quick glimpses of the game console's dashboard and the design of its user interface. As part of its Gamescom activities this week, Microsoft gave some members of the press a more detailed demo of the Xbox One dashboard.

That's the good news. The bad news is, according to Engadget and Pocket Lint, Microsoft did not allow journalists to take pictures or film the Xbox One dashboard demo, although it did release some new screenshots of the UI, as shown in this article. Pocket Lint indicates that these new screenshots are still not indicative of what the press at Gamescom got to see this week.

On the surface, the Xbox One dashboard looks similar to the one currently used on the Xbox 360, and indeed it also looks much like the Modern UI in Windows 8 and Windows Phone, in keeping with Microsoft's idea of unifying their design principles. However, the reports from the Gamescom demo state that each time an Xbox One player comes in front of the included Kinect sensor, it will automatically load up a personalized home screen just for that player. This is supposed to happen even if that person is at a friend's house in front of his or her Xbox One.

Up to six different profiles can be logged into the Xbox One at the same time, and each profile will have their own save game files, achievements and settings. The Xbox One will allow each person to follow up to 1,000 friends on Xbox Live, versus just 100 on the Xbox 360, but the number of people who can follow you on the Xbox One has no limits. It will be interesting to see which Xbox One owner will be the first to reach the one million follower mark.

Even though Microsoft has now admitted the Kinect doesn't have to be hooked up to the Xbox One for the console to work, the Gamescom demo showed off how the Kinect handles voice commands to the console. For example, people who are playing a game can say, "Xbox, record that" and gameplay video starts recording with the last 30 seconds buffered. Players can also say, "Xbox snap upload" to snap the recording to the side of the screen while continuing to play the game live on the other side.

The Xbox One's IR blaster can be used to control all the other AV hardware in a room. Combined with the Kinect, owners can access their equipment via voice commands. The Gamescom reports claim that this kind of functionally worked well in the demo room and gives us some hope that it will also work as advertised when the Xbox One is sitting in a person's real living room sometime in November.

Source: Engadget and Pocket Lint | Image via Microsoft

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They mentioned that voice commands were used to control all of their other home theater components via IR, does that mean they are able to setup specific controls to send to other devices? That would make Kinect almost like a universal remote, like a Harmony remote from Logitech.

That's exactly what it does. The IR in the Kinect is used to control your components. Just select what you have and Xbox One looks up the commands in an online database. It will be really cool if it knows when your TV is already on or not, so when you say "Xbox on" it can turn on the console, and if the TV is off, turn on the TV as well.

I hope it's more usable than the latest 360 OS. I really don't like how apps were shoe horned in there (And then hard to ever find again). lol

I hope MS makes it possible that we can slap a Picture to the Theme... It just makes things more vivid. Same happened with 8.1

only thing i want from the dashboard is no ad's for games on the front home page if im paying for gold, and if there is an advert i don't want it to be the biggest tile, i want the games i buy and download to take prominence.

REM2000 said,
only thing i want from the dashboard is no ad's for games on the front home page if im paying for gold, and if there is an advert i don't want it to be the biggest tile, i want the games i buy and download to take prominence.


xyquil23 said,
that's one ugly dashboard! lol

I am sure its not the final design, they for sure will improve it. May be different Colors for tiles or rearranging.

Sounds good to me, having up to 6 people logged in at the same time with it automatically switching between them as people sit to play is a good feature to have.