Xbox Live continues to add and update features in response to its multiplayer community. Last year, the service added support for “clubs” as well as improved friend-finding options. According to Xbox Live’s Major Nelson, Live users will enjoy a slew of new tweaks today as Microsoft’s gaming division adds many new features to its console and mobile apps, including custom Gamerpics, the ability to stream your games with up to three friends and a way to tie a single controller to your connection to make it easier to connect and play. The Xbox mobile apps also get a few additions, including new ways to search for parties and browse titles in your Game Pass subscription, and users can now create their own. killer instinct tournaments.
Previously, Xbox owners had to choose from preset images for their Gamerpics gamer photo. With the new update, you can upload any digital image from your console, Windows 10 PC or mobile phone to use as your on-screen avatar or club profile and background image. Nelson urges you to “keep it clean” because anyone can see what you download.
Xbox’s Mixer (née Beam) is the platform’s game streaming system. With the new update, you can now stream with up to two other people, called co-streaming. “With co-streaming, you and up to three of your friends can stream together to create a shared, multi-view experience on Mixer.” You can invite any other user (or your entire game party) to co-stream on your console and stream together in perfect harmony.
Xbox owners will also be able to connect a single controller as the default connection device. When you turn on the linked controller, the console connects to this account. This might make things easier in a multi-account household where everyone has their own controller, of course. killer instinct fans can now create their own custom tournaments through Live’s Club system as well.
The Xbox mobile apps are also getting updates, including more exposure for “look for group” (LFG) messages. When you create an LFG from any game hub on the console, you can share it with the activity feed or a predefined group of friends via Messages. Additionally, mobile users can browse all the titles they subscribed to with Xbox Game Pass. You can also install the games on your console from the app. You can now set your region on your phone to match your Xbox console, giving you access to content from different regional Xbox Stores. Finally, the Xbox app for Android has a bonus feature: Chat Bubbles. When a new message arrives, a new chat bubble appears on your phone, no matter what app or game you’re currently using. It’s a convenient way to stay up to date with your Xbox messages and club chats.
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