Microsoft Shows Off Xbox One "Snap" Feature

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Microsoft Shows Off Xbox One "Snap" Feature

A new video from Microsoft demonstrates how the Xbox One will let you do two things at once.

In a new promo video on YouTube, Xbox Chief Marketing and Strategy Officer Yusuf Mehdi shows off the "Snap" feature in action. In a nutshell, it lets you easily switch from a game to another feature, like live television or the "activity feed," with a simple voice command. Once the second task is fired up, switching back to the game and keeping both running simultaneously is a matter of simply double-tapping the controller.

"I can literally do two things at once," Medhi says in the trailer. "Examples of things that might be helpful for you when you're playing a game, you might want to go out to a site like Machinima and get access to some of the videos they've got for game-level walkthroughs. Or maybe you want to go to ESPN and get access to your sports scores."

"Two things at once!" he added. "Pretty fantastic."

I have a hard time getting too terribly wound up about multitasking - I spent most of my day in front of a machine that's typically doing about nine things at once, albeit not from the comfort of a couch - but even I have to admit that it is pretty cool, especially if it's that accurately responsive to voice commands. Cool enough to help move units? We'll start finding out on November 22.

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OMG! They've invented alt-tabbing!

Also, are MS PR-hacks contractually obligated to mention sports?

Who in their right mind would want to use this. You can't look, let alone interact, with two things at the same time. The human body does not work that way.

Want to use the internet while playing? It pauses the game. Hmm... I wonder if I could do that with my laptop on the coffeetable, without having the game in a smaller window.
Huh. Would you look at that, it worked. It even has a full keyboard and a trackpad for better use.

I just made a better Xbone out of a 360 and a laptop. I'm a freaking genius.

*Camera pans over to a desktop PC with 3 monitors running each their own thing. Xbone explodes out of sheer terror of this newfangled tech*

To be fair, it really does look quite seamless and fluid, which is to be admired. But I already multitask as much as I care to, with no help from my console.

And what results is that his lap of the Top Gear test track goes horrible because playing a game and watching TV at the same means that one of them is not going to get his attention.

You mean you can just.. have one thing going, then start doing another thing too? And still do both things at once?

o_o...

*inception brawwwwwwwwm*

I like how he said you can play a game while browsing, talks about internet sites you could go to and then doesn't show how to actually do that without the controller or anything.
How do you "go to a site like machinima" and "browse the net while racing" via voice commands only? Do tell.

I also hope the voice recognition works really, really well so shit doesn't start popping up when you say something, bonus points if the shit that pops up can only be closed via voice command.

Ninja'd by 1st post but I believe most people do this with alt-tabbing. At work when drawing up a building with CAD it's good to have a photo up next to it to compare. While at home I could be doing many things at once like say writing an essay with word while browsing the net for sources and references next to it, or even games and quickly bringing up an faq if required. Ok it may be a more seamless transition between full-screen apps but really what's the point for live-tv and gaming unless it's a mindless repetitive task in the game to get an achievement, something along the lines of dig up 10,000 potatoes.

Ralphfromdk:
Who in their right mind would want to use this. You can't look, let alone interact, with two things at the same time. The human body does not work that way.

Because the current way of doing is so much better, right? (have to leave game entirely to do anything like checking the marketplace or looking for a walkthrough).

Sure you can do it with a laptop or even a phone but thats not really the point is it? From your quote alone then not even that you should be able to do because your brain cant compute an Xbox and a PC at the same time (ammusingly you say that you have 3 desktops doing their own thing at the same time, "Who in their right mind would want to use this. You can't look, let alone interact, with two things at the same time. The human body does not work that way.")

This is an actually cool thing to have and its basicly the only cool thing the Xbox One has and yet somehow it sucks because reasons that arent aplied with everything else.

The only downside of it is how it has to have the multiple OSs running at the same time taking a hit in performance (if this was your reasoning I would understand but yours is just fishing for hate).

(and it paused the game since it was single player, it makes sense, when you alt-tab in a game do you just leave it running even in a racing game? Some PC games even do it automatic when the cursor leaves the window)

Microsoft's PR continues to be: "Look at all these non-gaming things you can do with your Xbone!"

I just want my F@#$ing game console to F@#$ing play games.
Guess I'll just get a PS4. Or just keep using my computer, which also has a mystical feature known to some as alt-tabbing.

And so the hunch that all of Windows 8's features were intended for machines other than desktops and laptops comes to fruit.

This isn't new, this feature was in Windows 8 from day one, and it's pretty obvious that it was just a test run for when it really gets rolled out on XBones and mobiles.

The only way I could see this being useful is if you're playing a videogame, and you're with another person who wants to do something else at the same time, and you have absolutely no other devices in the house other than the XBox One to do it on.

Of course the downside to this is you have to share a screen between 2 activities.

Point: Wii U

Kinitawowi:
And so the hunch that all of Windows 8's features were intended for machines other than desktops and laptops comes to fruit.

This isn't new, this feature was in Windows 8 from day one, and it's pretty obvious that it was just a test run for when it really gets rolled out on XBones and mobiles.

And yet you still can't use a controller to navigate Metro. Sigh. Steam can do it but MS cannot. That's Okay, I have W8Start so Windows 8 is now just a superior version of Windows 7. Shame it takes someone other than MS to fix it.

loa:
I like how he said you can play a game while browsing, talks about internet sites you could go to and then doesn't show how to actually do that without the controller or anything.
How do you "go to a site like machinima" and "browse the net while racing" via voice commands only? Do tell.

I also hope the voice recognition works really, really well so shit doesn't start popping up when you say something, bonus points if the shit that pops up can only be closed via voice command.

Indeed there was no indication of how he got to Machinma it was just "there" so I have to wonder voice command or pause the camera, type in machinama.com and then hit enter and then turn the camera back on, or maybe they use some sort of favorites menu.

Or I can just use my computer to bring up a walkthrough, or steam chat, or twitter, etc. Xbone should be able to multi task, my phone can!

Oh lord why...why does this company think that ANY of this crap even matters? Granted, it's useful for PC. Guess what, I have a freaking PC!

You know what, I'll just leave this here...

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=z2iku7pkbf0

synobal:

loa:
I like how he said you can play a game while browsing, talks about internet sites you could go to and then doesn't show how to actually do that without the controller or anything.
How do you "go to a site like machinima" and "browse the net while racing" via voice commands only? Do tell.

I also hope the voice recognition works really, really well so shit doesn't start popping up when you say something, bonus points if the shit that pops up can only be closed via voice command.

Indeed there was no indication of how he got to Machinma it was just "there" so I have to wonder voice command or pause the camera, type in machinama.com and then hit enter and then turn the camera back on, or maybe they use some sort of favorites menu.

I believe they used the voice command "scripted sequence".

Hey wait, if it comes with a "80s training montage" command I might think about getting one.

octafish:
Shame it takes someone other than MS to fix it.

MS are using the Bethesda model of program improvement?

RhombusHatesYou:

synobal:

loa:
I like how he said you can play a game while browsing, talks about internet sites you could go to and then doesn't show how to actually do that without the controller or anything.
How do you "go to a site like machinima" and "browse the net while racing" via voice commands only? Do tell.

I also hope the voice recognition works really, really well so shit doesn't start popping up when you say something, bonus points if the shit that pops up can only be closed via voice command.

Indeed there was no indication of how he got to Machinma it was just "there" so I have to wonder voice command or pause the camera, type in machinama.com and then hit enter and then turn the camera back on, or maybe they use some sort of favorites menu.

I believe they used the voice command "scripted sequence".

Hey wait, if it comes with a "80s training montage" command I might think about getting one.

ha, that is funny. I hope the scripted sequence is easy to use otherwise I don't see many average console users utilizing it.

ITT: More Microsoft bashing and complaints about improvements to the UI of all things. Tell me this, boys. If this is such a simple feature, how come PS4 doesn't freaking have it?

If the PS4 does this, people will nod in agreement and say that at least they might use it once in a while, but if Microsoft does it,

image

Arnoxthe1:
If this is such a simple feature, how come PS4 doesn't freaking have it?

Because it's Sony's turn to make us laugh next week.

What dumpster are these people getting ideas from?

I mean, while the PS3 was an interesting piece of technology, due to its CELL technology, no-one really could unleash it's potential for years. This was not a point in it's favour as any gamer could figure out. But for Microsoft who could've 'won' this Generation by sticking with a more powerful form of the technology used in the 360 to allow backwards compatibility, but no they decide to use some tech that people are going to spend years trying to figure out, while Sony goes, "We'll make this Generation easier for devs to use."

What the hell is in the water at Microsoft, because I think they need to switch to another source.

Funny how they always show Forza motorsport in these demo videos when racing games are one of those game types which require your undevided and constant attention if you want to do well. It would make a lot more sense if he was playing something turn based or a puzzle game.

Unlike a lot of you I can really see this feature being incredibly useful (especially for those of us who actually like sport). Off the top of me head you could have a walk through up right next to the game you are playing, very convenient. You could have a map up of hard to find items (like the treasures from Assassins Creed games, quite handy. I will certainly be using it to watch the cricket over summer since watching The Ashes is compulsory for any respectable Australian or Pom.

Sure this can all be done on a laptop or tablet/phone but it seems a lot more convenient, for me anyway, to look at what you want right there on the tv.

Man... people really do like bashing on Microsoft. Don't get me wrong; I think that what Microsoft tried to pull with DRM was terrible. I also am getting sick of their fascination of TV and sports. They need to discuss GAMES more. However, this seems like a really cool feature. I think that it could be useful.

At this point, Microsoft could decide to change the price of the Xbox One to ten bucks, and people would still say something negative.

RhombusHatesYou:
Because it's Sony's turn to make us laugh next week.

image

I like you.

Look, even I will admit I probably won't use this feature too much, but it does not take away the fact in the slightest that it's still something I could use and that it's actually pretty slick.

Andy Chalk:

"Two things at once!" he added. "Pretty fantastic."

Yes, so fantastic we could do it since 1995 on PCs!

Well at least we know it actually CAN run tv in the corner, even if that means it takes quarter of the screen with its black bar for it. Now if only it could, you know, use skype voice chat and game without showing skype.... but iguess thats too much to ask.

Ralphfromdk:
Who in their right mind would want to use this. You can't look, let alone interact, with two things at the same time. The human body does not work that way.

Tell that to people that play games and watch movies at the same time.....

While you are technically correct that humans dont look at two things at once, its rapid change of focus that allows us to be focused on both at the same time. and humans do work this way. Nor is it deadly, after 6 years ims till around after all, even if i am mad. mad i tell you!

Bob_F_It:
And what results is that his lap of the Top Gear test track goes horrible because playing a game and watching TV at the same means that one of them is not going to get his attention.

True for forza. now imagine you are playing a space sim and are mining asteroids. does not require a lot of attention, but requires a lot of time. you can watch movie and mine effectively.

VoidWanderer:

I mean, while the PS3 was an interesting piece of technology, due to its CELL technology, no-one really could unleash it's potential for years. This was not a point in it's favour as any gamer could figure out. But for Microsoft who could've 'won' this Generation by sticking with a more powerful form of the technology used in the 360 to allow backwards compatibility, but no they decide to use some tech that people are going to spend years trying to figure out, while Sony goes, "We'll make this Generation easier for devs to use."

Both Xbox One and PS4 are using X86 architecture, which is the same used in PCs, so when you program a game for one console you program it for all 3 at once. There is no "SEcret technolgoy to figure out" for Xbox.

Arnoxthe1:
ITT: More Microsoft bashing and complaints about improvements to the UI of all things. Tell me this, boys. If this is such a simple feature, how come PS4 doesn't freaking have it?

Because PS4 is trying to be a game console and not an entertainment center? YOu remmeber those things, that used to play games, thats what they did. just isnert the disc and play the game. no mandatory day 0 patches, no xbox gold accounts, just games.

dochmbi:
Funny how they always show Forza motorsport in these demo videos when racing games are one of those game types which require your undevided and constant attention if you want to do well. It would make a lot more sense if he was playing something turn based or a puzzle game.

I think thats just what this guy likes playing. another theory is that they all shot it in whole day and as such forza is just being paused and unpaused all this time. a third possibility is that forza devs struck some deals with it or other games do not work so well with autopausing. autopausing is easy for racing game, try autopausing a multiplayer game.

SirDeadly:
Unlike a lot of you I can really see this feature being incredibly useful (especially for those of us who actually like sport). Off the top of me head you could have a walk through up right next to the game you are playing, very convenient. You could have a map up of hard to find items (like the treasures from Assassins Creed games, quite handy. I will certainly be using it to watch the cricket over summer since watching The Ashes is compulsory for any respectable Australian or Pom.

Sure this can all be done on a laptop or tablet/phone but it seems a lot more convenient, for me anyway, to look at what you want right there on the tv.

Oh, the feature is useful, even if underdeveloped (only one location, i watch my movies in upper left corner, doubtful they allow that, they als overlay part of game display because then i dont have to waste third of my screen for blank space bellow the movie. something xobox doesnt do either). the thing is that we kinda had this feature since last milenium and thats the best they can show off with? and they pretend to be excited with this? I mean it bloody well takes a whole second OS run in the bakcgroudn to be able to do this for them. thats like if you had to run new instance of windows every time you wanted to open a net browser on your PC.

Xbox1, now with the ability to instantly kill the immersion of all your games. Usable by all your friends and family! They won't even need a controller for it.

I still think that Sugar Ray and Brian Urlacher shows the "alt+tabbing" thing better.

Strazdas:
Because PS4 is trying to be a game console and not an entertainment center? YOu remmeber those things, that used to play games, thats what they did. just isnert the disc and play the game. no mandatory day 0 patches, no xbox gold accounts, just games.

Yeah, I do. And last I checked, wouldn't you know it, Xbox One could play games too! And don't even bring up the day one patch. The PS4 needs one as well for half its features to even WORK. Microsoft also has the excuse that they completely reversed their policies during console production. PS4 doesn't even have an excuse for its day one patch. And Gold? Sony's now going to make a PS+ membership mandatory if you want to play online.

Any questions?

I'll be the first to admit it's an interesting feature. It works well for Xbox One's set up. To be an all in one center, being able to access different aspects as one is a necessity. True, it's not the most advanced of technology, but it works. PIP TVs aren't new, but the console manages to pull it off. My question is how does the sound work? Being able to watch TV is nice, but can you hear what's going on? Can you mute the main (game) to hear the TV feed? Maybe you'll surf the web to a music site for different songs during your game. But at the same time the second screen might be distracting during a more intense game. (Fighting, Racing) It's nice to have a web browser when you're stuck, but I doubt you can search and play as easily as you can swap screens.

Mad World:

At this point, Microsoft could decide to change the price of the Xbox One to ten bucks, and people would still say something negative.

Obvious desperation on Microsoft's part. XBOX IS DEAD ALL HAIL SONY[1]!!!!11

[1] Or Valve, depending on if the person I am parodying is of the "master race"

Arnoxthe1:

Strazdas:
Because PS4 is trying to be a game console and not an entertainment center? YOu remmeber those things, that used to play games, thats what they did. just isnert the disc and play the game. no mandatory day 0 patches, no xbox gold accounts, just games.

Yeah, I do. And last I checked, wouldn't you know it, Xbox One could play games too! And don't even bring up the day one patch. The PS4 needs one as well for half its features to even WORK. Microsoft also has the excuse that they completely reversed their policies during console production. PS4 doesn't even have an excuse for its day one patch. And Gold? Sony's now going to make a PS+ membership mandatory if you want to play online.

Any questions?

Xbox needs day 0 patch, available only via internet only, to play singleplayer games.
PS4 needs day 0 patch, available only via internet only, for mostly internet functionality. It can play games without it.
See the difference? especially considering some people cant download a patch?

We know that Xbox HAS had a working game engine for months - otherwise the developers wouldnt have been able to do its job. however it wasnt put into the Xbox because... microsoft was too lazy to fix thier own mistakes?
Yes, they reversed their policies, all the workd related to that shoudl fall on microsoft. because it was their fault for the whole mess. its not an excuse.
Yes, PS+ memebership, which is required for online gaming (but not other online services, contrary to gold, you can watch netflix without it and so on). It is cheaper. It offers you free games. Whiel technically Gold also offer free games, their selection was.... worthless.

Not necessarily the most useful feature ever, but an interesting addition nonetheless.

Strazdas:

Arnoxthe1:

Strazdas:
Because PS4 is trying to be a game console and not an entertainment center? YOu remmeber those things, that used to play games, thats what they did. just isnert the disc and play the game. no mandatory day 0 patches, no xbox gold accounts, just games.

Yeah, I do. And last I checked, wouldn't you know it, Xbox One could play games too! And don't even bring up the day one patch. The PS4 needs one as well for half its features to even WORK. Microsoft also has the excuse that they completely reversed their policies during console production. PS4 doesn't even have an excuse for its day one patch. And Gold? Sony's now going to make a PS+ membership mandatory if you want to play online.

Any questions?

Xbox needs day 0 patch, available only via internet only, to play singleplayer games.
PS4 needs day 0 patch, available only via internet only, for mostly internet functionality. It can play games without it.
See the difference? especially considering some people cant download a patch?

We know that Xbox HAS had a working game engine for months - otherwise the developers wouldnt have been able to do its job. however it wasnt put into the Xbox because... microsoft was too lazy to fix thier own mistakes?
Yes, they reversed their policies, all the workd related to that shoudl fall on microsoft. because it was their fault for the whole mess. its not an excuse.
Yes, PS+ memebership, which is required for online gaming (but not other online services, contrary to gold, you can watch netflix without it and so on). It is cheaper. It offers you free games. Whiel technically Gold also offer free games, their selection was.... worthless.

1. It is a plus that the PS4 will be able to play games right out of the box alone but if you take into account everything else, it makes the PS4 look like a thrown together piece of gaming equipment compared to the Xbox.

2. Wait. im confus. Too lazy to fix... what?

3. Whether you agree with what Microsoft was going to do or not is neither here nor there. They had something set up and ready to go but then they had to cancel it almost completely. (Which they actually didn't have to do but they did.) Sony didn't have to do any of that. They continued exactly as they planned it. Which still led to a system with half its features not there. Just looking at who's better organized here, Microsoft is the clear winner.

4. Sony does offer a much better selection of services for free members, certainly. But as to free games, well... While Sony has more recent titles for their paid members, they could only play them for as long as Sony made it available. Then if anyone wanted to play a former free game any more, they would have to buy it. Microsoft offers games that you can not only get for free, but KEEP, as long as you get them in the time frame that they are released in.

You say the games games released for Live Gold members are worthless? Halo 3 alone is to this day ahead in certain areas while Killzone is still trying to catch up with it. And that game was made, what, six years ago? Hardly a worthless game. Not to mention the fact that we're completely ignoring AC2, one of the most, if not thee most, liked AC games so far. (Although recently, Black Flag is pretty good.)

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