Xbox One's Cortana Has A New Virtual Friend

Hey Cortana, meet Alexa.


Microsoft has announced Xbox Skill, which lets you control your Xbox One console with voice commands through other devices. With Xbox Skill, you'll be able to order your console to follow your commands via Cortana or an Alexa-enabled device. For now, Xbox Skill is only available for U.S. Xbox Insiders in the Alpha Skip Ahead, Alpha, and Beta rings.

According to Xbox's website, Xbox Skill lets you power your console on and off, as well as "adjust volume, launch games and apps, start and stop broadcasts on Mixer, capture screenshots, and more." Once Cortana or Alexa is connected to your console, you can say, "Xbox, what can I say?" to find the full list of commands.

If you're an Xbox Insider in the U.S., follow the directions below to try out Xbox Skill with Cortana or Alexa.

For Cortana

  • Sign into the Xbox you want to control.
  • On your Windows 10 PC, sign in to your Microsoft account to link the skill.
  • Try your first command.

For Alexa

  • Sign into the Xbox you want to control.
  • Sign in with your Amazon Account on the Echo portal, and click Enable.
  • Sign in with your Microsoft account to link the skill.
  • Let Alexa discover your console, then follow the instructions to pair your console with Alexa.
  • Try your first command.

Xbox Skill is rolling out gradually for all U.S. Xbox Insiders right now. If you're an Insider, you can check to see if there is a digital assistant setting option on your console via the Devices tab under Settings. If it's not there, then you're not eligible yet. Check back as Xbox will continue to add all U.S. Xbox Insiders that fall into the Alpha Skip Ahead, Alpha, and Beta rings.

Via Xbox Skill, you'll be able to control your Xbox One with a Windows 10 PC, Amazon Echo, Harman Kardon Invoke, Sonos One, or Cortana and Alexa apps on iOS and Android devices.

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