Microsoft (NASDAQ:MSFT) recently announced that future Xbox One updates will focus on fixing and improving faulty social features. Xbox Chief Product Officer Marc Whitten discussed the details with Engadget this week during the 2014 International CES in Las Vegas. “The feedback we’ve gotten is pretty valid; some of the social stuff is hidden or harder to use than it was on the Xbox 360. So you’re gonna see us come out with an update where, well, we’re going to fix those things.”
The Xbox One, which launched in 13 countries on Nov. 22, sold 3 million consoles worldwide by the end of December. As with any new console release, users experienced a number of glitches and bugs, including Kinect problems, a sticky, white liquid oozing from the console, Xbox Ones shutting off unexpectedly, network issues and disc drives emitting a grinding noise. Whittten emphasized that Microsoft is closely paying attention to the complaints of users and fans. “As a person who’s been pretty involved in building Xbox Live for the last decade, I take it pretty seriously when people say it’s harder to get into a party, and the defaults aren’t right, and I don’t like the model. So what I’m trying to do with the team is kind of theme some stuff up. Let’s take an update and really go through a big list of what we’re hearing from customers, what we know is broken with the architecture, areas that we want to improve or complete,” he said.
A large portion of the console’s social functions – friends lists, achievements and its party system -- have been divided into individual applications on the next-gen system, instead of being baked into the OS like the Xbox 360. While this does lead to a clear and aesthetically pleasing user interface, many Xbox One fans believe that it makes using the social features feel awkward and unnatural.
Whitten stressed that Microsoft is swiftly responding to these criticisms, focusing on improving the social interface. The company has even delayed streaming on gaming platform Twitch for a few more months, presumably to remedy the flawed social features.
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