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October 2018 Xbox Update Brings Xbox Avatars and Cortana, Alexa Voice Skills

The October 2018 Xbox Update is bringing a slew of new content, including the debut of the new Xbox Avatars, Voice Skills, and Dolby Vision video streaming.

The hotly-anticipated new Xbox Avatars are coming to the system with a wide range of different body types, clothing, and accessibility options that will allow players to customize their Avatars to their liking. The Avatars will appear across Xbox One as well as activity feeds, Friend blocks on the Home screen, leaderboards, profiles, and other locations, as they will become a big part of the Xbox ecosystem going forward.

At launch, there will also be a new Avatar Store rife with new Avatar items from games like “Halo,” “Gears of War,” and a selection of other titles. You can use the new Photobooth feature to take pictures of your new Avatar to share around the network, or use as your gamerpic if you so choose. Photobooth offers a variety of different emotes, backdrops, and other ways for you to customize your look so you can share it with the world. You can still use your Xbox Original Avatar, according to Microsoft, which is still an option, if the new Avatar system isn’t appealing to you. The new system features a host of different, inclusive options, however, that weren’t available in the first Avatar rollout on Xbox 360.

Additionally, a new Xbox Skill is coming to Cortana and Alexa for users in the US, which will allow players to use their voice to navigate their Xbox One system via Cortana and Alexa-enabled devices. As part of the new promotion, anyone who purchases an Xbox One S or Xbox One X via Amazon will receive an Amazon Echo Dot as part of a limited time offer.

Dolby Vision video streaming is headed to Xbox One, offering HDR video streaming support across Xbox One S and Xbox One X. It will be available as an option that may be turned on via the console settings, so if your television has the latest Dolby Vision support and a Premium Netflix subscription, you’ll be able to reap the benefits of the service at launch, with additional app support coming at a later date.

Lastly, Avatars and Dolby Vision support, five additional languages are being added to Xbox One’s Narrator feature: Spanish, Portuguese, Polish, Swedish, and Dutch will be available when the new October update hits. There’s an Australian version of English coming for Narrator as well, eliminating the need for Australian gamers to select US or UK English to utilize the app.

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