This summer’s Xbox One update brings Cortana to the console (again)

While everyone’s favorite blue holographic lady has been available in both Halo: The Master Chief Collection and Halo 5: Guardians on Xbox One, Cortana — Microsoft’s voice recognition tool — has thus far been absent from the console’s interface. That changes with this summer’s Xbox One update, and a number of other tweaks will also continue to blur the line between console and Windows 10.

Initially launching in only the U.S, the U.K., France, Italy, Germany, and Spain (most likely to keep the number of recognized languages to a minimum as it rolls out), Cortana will replace the current voice recognition software on Xbox One. Saying “Hey Cortana” will let you perform many of the same functions as before, but Cortana also allows for a more personalized experience. As you can see in the above video, asking Cortana what another player is up to will automatically open your “friends” menu, and asking her to start a party with a friend eliminates the need to manually send a request.

Microsoft recently revealed a version of Halo 5‘s Forge Mode for Windows 10, which allows PC players to share their creations with Xbox One friends. With the new update, you’ll be able to see when they’re in a creative mood; PC games will receive their own “hubs” on Xbox Live, and you’ll be able to see your friends’ best clips and screenshots from the platform as well.

A few more subtle changes to the “My Games & Apps” app are also on their way. You can now change the tile size for games, allowing for more to appear on the screen at the same time, and updates will now list their download speed to give you a better idea of when you’ll be able to play. The app has also been moved to the top right of the home screen, and an installation ticker is located directly underneath.

The next Xbox One update will be available later this summer. If you’re in the Preview program, it’s rolling out right now.


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