Don't Like Something About Xbox One? Microsoft is Listening

Don't Like Something About Xbox One? Microsoft is Listening

Xbox One's functionality may be lacking in a few areas, but that doesn't mean Microsoft isn't paying attention to feedback from new owners.

Have you got an Xbox One? How have you been finding it? Jaz, Jeremy and Mike shared their thoughts here, and came to some mixed conclusions.

They weren't the only ones, either. New Xbox One owners who picked up a system at launch have had a while to explore the system now, and there's a few significant areas where the new console has been found to be significantly wanting. So much so, in fact, that a group of Reddit users worked together to compile a list of missing or incomplete features, which later spawned its own website, XboxFeedback.com.

Xbox Feedback gathers together comments and suggestions from the community -- particularly the original Reddit thread that spawned the discussion -- and also shares solutions to common problems. The site is well-organized and detailed, splitting the individual items into numerous categories ranging from hardware issues to more specialized feedback such as game prices, media codecs and party chat.

Much of the feedback stems from the Xbox One's revamped interface, which many believe has made a number of common, simple tasks on the Xbox 360 unnecessarily complicated. The removal of the Guide function makes accessing friends lists, achievements, messages and party chat considerably more cumbersome than it used to be, for example, and the total lack of an indicator showing how much hard drive space you have left is just baffling.

Other suggestions are more practical in nature -- under the "controller" section, for example, users request a battery indicator and notifications warning when battery life is getting low. The ability to save a controller preference to the cloud and share it across multiple games of the same type is also an eminently sensible suggestion -- as is the proposed new Kinect command "Xbox find controller," which would cause all controllers in the room to turn on and vibrate for five seconds.

Some of the feedback is surprising, as it makes it appear that Microsoft has abandoned many of the things that made the latter-day incarnations of Xbox Live so effective as an online service. You can no longer view "recent players" you've competed against in online matches, for example, making Microsoft's new rating system for players all but useless once you've left a game, and party chat has both been made unnecessarily complicated and had its functionality crippled -- it no longer functions across games, for example. The Kinect integration has brought its own problems, too; many players are unaware that Kinect's microphone is on by default for game chat, causing private conversations and activities to be broadcast to everyone else.

The various discussions on Reddit and the Xbox Feedback site attracted the attention of Microsoft mouthpiece Larry "Major Nelson" Hryb, who commented on Reddit that he had "had a meeting about much of this" and assured disgruntled users that "things will get better."

"I can't offer a timeline or a list of what will be addressed first," he said. "But we are aware of the issue and things will get better."

Looks like Mike had a point; new Xbox One users really do seem to be part of an extended beta.

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