Xbox Home Removes Cortana in New Update

Microsoft is redesigning Xbox Home for the Xbox One by reworking the current UI in an effort to simplify and streamline the way Xbox users peruse their content. Dubbed the “Home Experiment,” the Xbox UI redesign update focuses on two major points. First, the Home panel is dropping the top Twists bar in favor of simple, noticeable buttons for key areas. And second, the UI is removing the Cortana voice command system in favor of off-console cloud-based alternatives.

The Xbox One’s Home page is the console’s most important, being both the first thing console owners see when they turn on the platform and the place with the quickest access to other areas of the Xbox One’s user interface. The Twists menu at the top of the Home page, named for the way the menu twisted to different panels with a button press, is gone.

The Twist menu is replaced by simple buttons arranged in a square, placed below a panel for the user’s most recently played game. The buttons are for Game Pass, Mixer, the Microsoft Store, and the Xbox Community. The extra space has been shifted to make more room for the user’s recently played games. The “Discover” section of the Home panel also remains, populated by various offers and advertisements.

Regarding Cortana, the voice-activated service will no longer be available on Xbox One. The Xbox team has come to the conclusion that Cortana and Microsoft’s voice commands are best taken off-console and onto cloud-based alternatives. That means that if Xbox users want to continue using Cortana, they can use the Xbox Skill via the Cortana app on either iOS or Android devices, or via Windows.

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