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xboxone2121Microsoft began rolling out a new update for the Xbox One on Monday night, and gamers can expect better Kinect functionality and friend improvements, in addition to several other tweaks to the system.

Those participating in Microsoft’s beta program have tested the new updates over the past month, but now the masses will start seeing changes. Among them include the ability to see when friends and favorites sign onto Xbox Live — “one of the most frequently requested features,” notes Microsoft — along with voice and motion improvements to the Kinect.

Here is the full list of updates:

  • Game and app saves and updates. A game save progress bar will show you the status of your game saves. You will also be able to easily tell what games and apps are being updated or have been updated recently.
  • Friends improvements. Notifications will be added to see when favorites and friends sign in to Xbox Live. This was one of the most frequently requested features, so we made it a priority to include it in this update. Also, friends who are in multiplayer will be identified in the friends list.
  • Kinect voice and motion improvements will continue to be fine-tuned for quality and reliability of Xbox One commands. For example, we’ve updated some of the gesture functionality to reduce false positives on non-hand objects triggering gesture commands.
  • Improved GameDVR video quality through compression algorithm improvements.
  • Blu-ray player supports 50 Hz video output for content recorded at 50 Hz. We’ll also be updating the Blu-ray Player app in the coming days to round out these improvements.
  • Controller and headset adaptor firmware updates will reduce audio static and improve wireless connectivity.
  • Silent reboot after system updates and system update on demand now available. If your console is in Instant On mode, the update will happen automatically and return to standby upon completion. This means you won’t need to power on your console after an update moving forward. If you want to take future updates when available without waiting for your console to do it on its own, we’ve added this option under system settings and you’ll be able to use it next update. It will only show as available when there is an update to take.

The Xbox One Titanfall bundle is still selling for $450 at certain retailers like Amazon and Best Buy, a deal that has been available for nearly one month. It will be interesting to see if the lower price point — which is technically less than Sony’s PS4 if you buy the bundle — helps Microsoft catch up to Sony in total sales. The NPD Group, which tracks console sales in the U.S., will post data from March this Thursday.

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