Sleek and bold is one of the ways to describe the new Xbox user interface. There are many other ways to describe it as well, the vast majority of them positive. The library containing the games and the apps has seen some major changes and tweaks. This new UI greatly improves the user experience. Let’s take a look at all the major and minor changes.
Xbox With A New Interface Release date
The new UI is currently only available to users who are a part of the Xbox Insider Program. This program allows users to test some unreleased, experimental features. The users report the bugs to the developers, and this irons out the problems before launch. It is expected that the new interface for the library of games and apps will come out in the coming weeks for the general public. The UI is available on the Xbox One as well as the Xbox Series X/S.
Changes made to the UI
The left side of the dashboard shows the username of the player. It also shows the options for accessing games, apps, groups, the full library, and the option to manage storage and other settings. Below the above options, there is a large infographic which shows available space on the drive. This is particularly useful as it saves you a trip to the storage option in settings. If you have any ongoing downloads, they will also show up above the infographic.
This is also the first time that Discord has been fully implemented into the user interface. This will be among the greatest conveniences that players will experience.
Xbox With A New Interface – The new Full Library
If you navigate to the Full Library option, you will see several categories in which your apps and games are arranged. These are as follows:
- The first option is All Games, which is pretty self-explanatory. It will include all the games, whether they are bought from the Store or from a subscription service.
- The next option is Owned Games. This option will show only the games that you have purchased from the Xbox Store.
- The third option is for Xbox Game Pass. If you have a subscription for it, which you should (it’s such a great service, we can’t stop recommending it), you’ll see the available titles here.
- The fourth option has the games from the Xbox Live Gold subscription.
- The next option is for EA Play. If you have subscribed to this service, you will see EA games like FIFA and Battlefield here.
- The final option is for Owned Apps. Here, you will find apps like Spotify, Netflix, Discord, etc.
You can also apply filters to all these categories. The option to sort them by date or in alphabetical order is also available. The number of games or apps in each category is also displayed.
Presence of EA Play: The implications
The availability of EA Play could be a hint towards the inclusion of more such services. There are rumours of Microsoft making a deal to include Ubisoft Plus. More subscription services might soon make their way to the Xbox as well. These changes point towards the future of gaming relying heavily on subscription services. While many players today object to this ‘gaming as a streaming service’ business model, the sheer ease of it may change their minds yet.
An aesthetic critique of the new user interface
From a purely aesthetic point of view, the new UI does look very attractive. It is innovative while still evoking a nostalgic feel that reminds one of the Xbox 360 UI. It maintains a minimalistic design without looking too bland. The slate grey background and white text against the vibrant game covers provide a perfect contrast. Moreover, the matte colour palette of the UI is far cry from the bright, garish colours of the early 2000s.
The UI of the Xbox consoles has evolved into a characteristic blocky, tile-based style. Excluding the alien-like UI of the original Xbox, all the consequent UIs have had some element of the tiles. From the Xbox 360 onwards, Microsoft has shown an obvious inclination towards a simplistic UI. Whether it be Windows 8 or the Nokia Lumia UI, Microsoft has experimented greatly and perfected this particular style.
Xbox With A New Interface – Conclusion
At long last, it seems that Microsoft has found the sweet spot between modernist and vibrant design. And it looks like it is here to stay. The new Xbox interface makes a lot of improvements without completely overhauling the UI. And it does so with exceeding attention to functionality. That was all for today. Thank you for reading!