An Open Letter To Microsoft

Dear Microsoft,

It’s been over three years since the launch of the Xbox One and it’s great… mostly.

I have recently upgraded my Day One Edition to the new Xbox One S and you still haven’t addressed the key problems I have with the platform.

Why oh why does your console still send out IR signals for my TV and AV unit when I switch the console on remotely? I have a small PC in the bedroom in order to play games from the comfort of my duvet when I fancy a lazy morning or evening. It’s great that I don’t have to walk to the living room to switch on the console but it defeats the object entirely when it also switches on the TV and the surround sound amp that are also in that room.

Surely it can’t be that difficult to tell the Xbox not to send out IR signals when a remote connection is made from a PC? Sony manages to do this just fine. Switching on my PS4 from the console itself will just as conveniently switch on the TV its attached to, but switching it on from their Remote Play app or a PSTV will leave that TV alone.

I don’t want to disable the feature. Being able to walk into my house and shout “Hey Cortana, Xbox on” and have everything switched on and ready to go before I’ve even sat down is possibly the only decent reason to own a Kinect these days (thanks for the free adapter by the way) but I shouldn’t be expected to let this hinder another great feature of the console.

My second gripe falls under the same tree. Why can I still not play my Xbox One games away from the confines of my own home yet? With my PS4 I can use Remote Play from anywhere in the world with a simple app on my phone or laptop. With my Xbox One though, I have to be on the same WiFi network and using a Windows 10 PC. I can of course set up a complicated VPN to my home network but that’s not exactly user friendly nor does it even work that great as a solution.

Surely now that the new Xbox One controllers have bluetooth connectivity it would be really easy to make an app for mobile devices. Heck, even if you made the app exclusive to your Windows Phone platform I’d actually consider buying one of your handsets.

Lastly, why not make streaming my games easier while I actually am at home by not needing a PC to do it. Sony’s PSTV was a huge flop so I don’t expect you to follow in their footsteps but there is a very simple thing you can do without releasing any new hardware.

A lot of people like me still have an Xbox 360 lying around and even if they don’t you can pick one up second hand for less than £50 in most places. Why not make an app for the 360 that will allow you to stream from an Xbox One?

If any one at Redmond is reading this, kindly take note from this letter. Don’t take my ramblings as an insult to your system as a whole, nor am I saying that Sony’s console is superior because of this. You both have your merits and your flaws over each other but while I’ve been playing more games on Xbox One lately, these issues have been playing on my mind.

I don’t want any credit for these ideas, just please try make them happen.

Kind regards,

Adam.

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