While the longterm fate of the Xbox One under new CEO Satya Nadella remains uncertain, Microsoft is gearing up to release the first two major updates for the console in the coming weeks. As discussed by Microsoft’s Larry Hryb (a.k.a. “Major Nelson”), the Xbox One Spring Update will arrive in two parts, on February 11th and March 4th.
The first update, due out next Tuesday, will bring improvements to Kinect voice recognition, new tools for developers, stability fixes, USB keyboard support, a Dashboard indicator of remaining free space on the console’s hard drive, and, perhaps most importantly, a new on-screen battery life indicator for the console’s wireless controllers. The update will also feature layout changes for the My Games & Apps section of the Dashboard, which will keep apps and games separate for easier navigation and management.
The second update, due Tuesday, March 4th, brings a “new party and multiplayer system” (just in time for the March 11th release of the highly anticipated Microsoft-exclusive shooter Titanfall). No one is quite sure exactly what that means just yet, but Xbox exec Marc Whitten promises to provide more info in the coming weeks. Mr. Whitten also promises “many new features and improvements” for the update, which many users likely hope is a reference to the promised Twitch.tv streaming support and the rollout of new Xbox One apps like HBO Go, NHL GameCenter, and Spotify.
Microsoft launched the Xbox One on November 22, 2013. According to the company, it has sold more than 3 million units as of the end of 2013. While the above-mentioned updates will be the first major changes to the platform since its release, a smaller maintenance update was released on December 10, 2013.