Xbox One May System Update Is Now Live, Bringing Voice Messaging, Dedicated Servers For Party Chat & More

By Matthew Buzzi , Updated May 12, 2015 07:18 PM EDT

The Xbox One system update for May released yesterday, bringing a host of new features to owners.

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Chief among those additions are voice messages, a feature that had been something of a staple on Xbox 360 and surprisingly were not included on Microsoft's new console until now. Dedicated servers for party chat are also a big deal, and should provide more reliable groups moving forward.

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The software developers have been listening to community feedback, and as such have implemented these features in May's update:

- Voice Messages: Starting today, you can now send and receive voice messages from the Xbox One messages app. This is the No. 1 feature requested in the Friends and Parties area on the Xbox Feedback site > "Add audio message ..." Quickly and easily record audio to send to your friends or others through your snapped messages app, accessed through a simple quick double tap of the Xbox button. Additionally, voice messages can be exchanged between Xbox 360 and Xbox One consoles.

- Power On/Off from Xbox One SmartGlass: The Xbox One SmartGlass app for Windows, Windows Phone, iOS and Android are being updated to let you power your Xbox One on and off when your devices are on the same home network as your console. This feature request has more than 4,000 votes on the Xbox Feedback site.

- User Selectable Power Mode: We are also altering the initial setup experience on Xbox One worldwide to enable you to select your preferred power mode. Instant-on enables you to use the "Xbox on" voice command and receive background updates to console, game and app updates. Energy-saving mode is a low power state that requires you to press the Xbox button on your console to start up your Xbox One. For additional information, see this post on Xbox Wire.

- Dedicated Servers for Party Chat: Back in March, we enabled dedicated chat relay servers for Xbox One preview members to solve NAT traversal issues that prevented some people from being able to use party chat. Over the coming weeks, we will start to expand the availability of the party chat relay services beyond preview members to a broader audience as we continue to fine tune the feature and scale out the servers needed to support party chat relay services.

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