Xbox One October update adds new Avatars, Alexa controls, Dolby Vision HDR

Ruben Fields
October 12, 2018

Lo and behold, they have finally arrived, in all of their chunky, cartoon glory.

Microsoft has been teasing their return for months, but on Thursday, the company announced they are rolling out now as part of the October dashboard update.

The new avatars include a lot of neat options previously not included, like prosthetic limbs and mobility aids, which allow them to represent a wider range of players more accurately.

The October update also adds Cortana and Alexa support to the Xbox One through the new Xbox Skill. Once enabled, you will be able to use your voice to turn on/off your console, adjust volume, launch games and apps, take screenshots, and much more. You can now choose to have your Xbox Avatar across your entire Xbox One profile and console, and even use it as your gamerpic. You don't have to adopt a new Xbox Avatar if you don't want to, as you can keep your old Avatar if you so wish, but there are new items in the Avatar Store, including licensed props from the likes of Halo and Gears of War.

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And lastly, the Narrator accessibility feature has been updated with Spanish, Portuguese, Polish, Swedish, Dutch, and an Australian English version, so Aussies don't have to put up with U.S. or United Kingdom accents coming from their Xbox! Everyone is unique and you're given more options than ever before to personalize your Avatar as you see fit. Whatever the case, many Xbox One bundles already come with free games, like the National Basketball Association 2K19 bundle pictured above, so you're getting multiple freebies as part of this deal. Right now, only Netflix premium users will be able to make use of Dolby Vision HDR streaming on their Xbox One as Microsoft works with other apps to expand its Dolby Vision support in the future.

To enable Dolby Vision on your console, navigate to Settings - Display and sound - Video output - Video modes - Allow Dolby Vision. "We're also adding an Australian version of English language for Narrator, so Australian users will no longer have to select USA or U.K. English to use Narrator", the Xbox team explained today.

The Xbox Skill for Cortana and Alexa is available today in the US.

Watch a full overview of the update below.

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