Category Archives: Xbox

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With the launch of the Xbox Adaptive Controller, gaming gets more inclusive – Windows Experience Blog

September 4, 2018 5:03 pm

By Athima Chansanchai / Writer, Windows Blog

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For gamers around the world with accessibility needs, the Xbox Adaptive Controller is now available at Microsoft Stores and GameStop Online for $99.99.Xbox Adaptive Controller
“The Xbox Adaptive Controller is a product that was ideated and pioneered with inclusivity at its heart,” writes Gabi Michel, Xbox Adaptive Controller program manager. “We iterated on and refined it through close partnership with gamers with limited mobility and fan feedback, as well as guidance and creativity from accessibility experts, advocates and partners such as The AbleGamers Charity, The Cerebral Palsy Foundation, Craig Hospital, Special Effect and Warfighter Engaged. Even the accessible packaging the Xbox Adaptive Controller arrives in was an entirely new approach to redefining success in product packaging — directly informed and guided by gamers with limited mobility.”
Find out more on Xbox Wire.

Tags Accessibility Gamers Xbox Xbox Adaptive Controller

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Bring your film libraries together through Movies Anywhere, now available on Xbox and Windows 10 – Windows Experience Blog

The Microsoft Movies & TV app for Xbox and Windows 10 devices now supports Movies Anywhere, which brings your favorite film libraries together in one place.

When you connect your Microsoft account with your Movies Anywhere account, you can enjoy all of your eligible movies from Microsoft across your favorite screens at no extra cost. This includes Xbox and Windows, iOS and Android, smart TVs and streaming devices.
You’ll also be able to watch eligible movies you previously bought from other participating digital retailers through the Movies & TV app on Xbox and Windows 10.
As part of this launch, you can add “X-Men: Days of Future Past” for free to your digital collection, for a limited time, if you connect your Microsoft account to Movies Anywhere for the first time.
Head over to Xbox Wire to find out more.
Updated August 6, 2018 9:06 pm

Top 4 ways to optimize your Microsoft Store listing – Windows Developer Blog

When publishing your app to the Microsoft Store, be sure to take advantage of the many options to make your Store listing stand out. Great video, text, and images can help create customer interest and drive purchases. Remember, your Microsoft Store listing will be many customers’ first exposure to your app. It’s crucial to make a good first impression!Make the most of your listing
1. Include video trailers

Video trailers are short videos that spotlight your product and give your customers a quick look at what it does. On average, including one or more video trailers can increase downloads by up to 11%.
Check out Affinity Designer’s trailer for an example that really shows off what the app can do.
Quick trailer tips:
Focus on high quality and short length (60 seconds or less).
Use different thumbnails for each trailer.
Keep key messaging short and centered in each frame.
When using trailers, you must also provide a 1920 x 1080 pixel image (16:9) in the Promotional images section in order for your trailers to appear at the top of your Store listing. This image will appear after your trailers have finished playing.
Note that trailers are only shown to customers on Windows 10, version 1607 or later (which includes Xbox).
See more information and tips here.
2. Create a great app description
The description is the first thing your customer reads about your app in the Microsoft Store, and it may also appear in search results and algorithm lists—so make it count.
Quick description tips:
Start with the value prop: Why should your customer buy this?
Focus on your app’s appeal with plain, clear language.
Localize for all your markets.
Read more here.
3. Include an eye-catching logo

Your logo is the main image displayed on Windows 10 and Xbox, and in searches or collections and we strongly recommend providing both a 9:16 poster art and 1:1 box art image. A good logo can visually “pop” and lead customers to see more.
We recommend providing these logo images to create an optimal appearance in the Store. In particular, the 9:16 Poster art image is required for proper display for customers on Windows 10 and Xbox devices. You also have the option to upload additional logo images that will be used in the Store (instead of images taken from your app’s packages) to create a more customized display.
Quick logo tips:
Include your app name as a key part of the image.
Provide .png files no larger than 50MB each.
Provide all requested formats and sizes for optimal display across devices.
More details on all the display options here.
4. Keep your customers up to date
When you update your app it’s always a good idea to let customers know what you’ve improved in the latest release, especially if you’ve fixed bugs or improved the app based on customer feedback. Use the What’s new in this version text box to share that information with your customers.  In addition to letting your current customers know what’s changed, this also shows potential new customers that you’re listening to feedback and continuing to add new features. 
Get started now
Whether you’re submitting your app for the first time or making an update to an app that’s in the Store, we hope you’ll find these tips useful. For more details on all of these options, along with other ways you can create great Microsoft Store listings, start here.
Updated July 25, 2018 10:38 am

Find out how gamers with disabilities helped design the new Xbox Adaptive Controller’s packaging – Windows Experience Blog

Packaging can be annoying for any consumer (see: wrap rage). But for people with disabilities, it often creates yet another challenge in a world riddled with them, an unnecessary obstacle that leads to frustration and a delay getting to the object inside.Recognizing that reality, Microsoft’s Packaging Design team faced a unique challenge in creating a box for the new Xbox Adaptive Controller, designed to accommodate gamers with limited mobility. The box for the device, which will be available for $99.99 in September through the Microsoft Store, needed to be as accessible as what was inside.

It had to enable gamers with limited dexterity, who might be using just one hand or arm, to easily open the box and remove the controller. And it had to be as high-quality and aesthetically appealing as any other Xbox packaging.
It was the first time Microsoft had created packaging designed specifically for accessibility, and getting it right was critical.
Find out how they did it.
Updated July 25, 2018 7:02 am

6 great ways to score big during Ultimate Game Sale – Windows Experience Blog

Ultimate Game Sale* is back! Now is the perfect time to save big and upgrade your slowing gaming PC, stock up top-rated PC games, or pick up that new gaming keyboard and mouse at Microsoft Store. While Ultimate Game Sale is our biggest ever, you need to jump all over these deals now because the sale ends July 30.1. Save up to 50 percent on more than 100 top-rated games for Windows

Save big on select Windows 10 games such as “State of Decay 2,” “Sea of Thieves,” “Middle Earth: Shadow of War,” “Forza Motorsport 7,” “Zoo Tycoon: Ultimate Animal Collection” and more. There’s more than 100 popular PC games on sale during Ultimate Game Sale and many support Xbox Play Anywhere, meaning one purchase gets you the game on Xbox One and Windows 10 with cross save capability (PC hardware requirements may vary for games on Windows 10).
2. Save up to 60 percent on select gaming PCs and accessories
Dell G3 15” Gaming PC
Discover great deals on more than 20 gaming PCs, keyboards, mice, headsets, and more including the following:
3. Save with great in-game deals on your favorite free-to-play games
Click on the image to see a video preview of these games
Looking to give your favorite game a boost or in need of a new game to keep you entertained this summer? With the return of the Ultimate Game Sale, you’ll find deals on select in-game content for your favorite free-to-play titles including “Cooking Fever,” “Nonstop Knight,” “Hill Climb Racing 2,” “Minecraft for Windows 10,” “Seekers Notes: Hidden Mysteries” and more.
4. Save up to $250 and take a giant leap into new worlds with select Windows Mixed Reality Headsets
Acer Windows Mixed Reality Headset with Motion Controllers
Ultimate Game Sale is a great time to save on select Windows Mixed Reality headsets with motion controllers from Acer and HP. Immerse yourself in a new reality that features a wide range of epic experiences. Select headsets with motion controllers start at $199 during the sale.
5. Save big on select Xbox games, consoles, accessories, and more

If console gaming is more your speed, then Ultimate Game Sale is the perfect time to save up to 65 percent on more than 700 Xbox games including “Far Cry 5,” “PLAYERUNKNOWN’S BATTLEGROUNDS,” “Fortnite: Save the World Founders Pack” and more.
Not yet an Xbox Live Gold or Xbox Game Pass member? There’s also huge savings on Xbox Live Gold and Xbox Game Pass memberships during Ultimate Game Sale. Get 3 months of Xbox Live Gold for $10** or 3 months of Xbox Game Pass for $10**. Exclusions apply and promotional offers not valid for existing members.
6. Enter to win the Ultimate Doppelgamer Sweepstakes

Help us celebrate the return of Ultimate Game Sale with the Ultimate Doppelgamer Sweepstakes! Whether it’s an accidental resemblance or the result of hours of cosplay, we know there’s a game character you look like — your doppelgamer. Share that resemblance by uploading your pic on Instagram or Twitter (or both) with the tags #UltimateDoppelgamer and #Sweepstakes, between July 17-30 to be entered for a chance to win a trip to PAX West in Seattle****. Learn more and check out the full rules.
Ultimate Game Sale already is in full swing, so visit your local Microsoft Store or shop online to take advantage of these deals before the sale ends July 30.
*Offers shown are available 7/19/2018 to 7/30/2018 on select items in Microsoft Store while supplies last. Offers and content varies by market and may change at any time. Not valid on prior orders or purchases. May not be combinable with other offers. Other exclusions and limits may apply. Offers on gaming devices, accessories, and Windows Mixed Reality headsets are limited to the US, Puerto Rico, and Canada. 
 **After promotional period, Xbox Live Gold subscription continues to be charged at the then-current regular monthly price (subject to change) plus applicable taxes, unless cancelled. Credit card required. Promotional offer not valid for existing subscribers. 
***After promotional period, Xbox Game Pass subscription continues to be charged at the then-current regular monthly price (subject to change) plus applicable taxes, unless cancelled. Credit card required. Promotional offer not valid for existing subscribers. Subscription required to play games; catalog varies over time.
****No Purchase Necessary. Open only to legal residents of the 50 U.S. + DC 18+. Game ends 7/30/18. For details, see Official Rules.

A new product badge for Microsoft Store applications

As many of you know, building quality apps is quite a commitment and investment in time. Once your app is in the Store, the next challenge is getting the word out about your new title and driving traffic to your product. Today, we’d like to announce a new tool for marketing your apps in your own blogs and websites. We’d like to introduce our new web badge for Microsoft Store products.

The new badge will render in your own website pulling localized logo, pricing (including sale pricing!), ratings and artwork directly from the store catalog. To render this badge for 8 Zip simply embed this script using its Store Id (9wzdncrfhwb8). Please note you must add the Id in two places in the badge script, the “class=” and inside the “mspb-“.

<div id="mspb-nc9jl2ngc1i" class="9wzdncrfhwb8"></div>
<script src="https://storebadge.azureedge.net/src/badge-1.6.1.js"></script>
<script>
mspb(‘9wzdncrfhwb8’, function(badge) {
document.getElementById(‘mspb-nc9jl2ngc1i’).innerHTML = badge;
});
</script>

The button click on the badge will direct your customers to the proper Product Description Page where they make the actual purchase. You can add multiple badges to any single page, just make sure they all use a unique div Id, as shown above.
To see the badge in action, check out XBOX’s @majornelson (www.majornelson.com) who is using the badge to promote Xbox content on his blog.
Example post here: https://majornelson.com/2018/05/03/xbox-live-gold-members-play-for-honor-xcom-2-and-just-cause-3-for-free-this-weekend/.
That’s it! Feel free to promote your apps and games on your own sites.

A new Microsoft Store revenue share is coming

Microsoft Store continues to evolve to be the best destination for Windows 10 users to discover and download Microsoft-verified applications that deliver predictable performance. Microsoft Store is also the best destination on Windows 10 for developers to reach new audiences and gain new customers. We’ll focus on the infrastructure, so you can focus on building the best app and growing your business as a developer. To that end, we are excited about the announcement Joe Belfiore will be making at Build 2018 regarding a new Microsoft Store fee structure coming later this year.
A better revenue share for developers
Starting later this year, consumer applications (not including games) sold in Microsoft Store will deliver to developers 95% of the revenue earned from the purchase of your application or any in-app products in your application, when a customer uses a deep link to get to and purchase your application. When Microsoft delivers you a customer through any other method, such as in a collection on Microsoft Store or any other owned Microsoft properties, and purchases your application, you will receive 85% of the revenue earned from the purchase of your application or any in-app products in your application
The new fee structure is applicable to purchases made on Windows 10 PCs, Windows Mixed Reality, Windows Phone and Surface Hub devices and excludes purchases on Xbox consoles.
A new way for developers to monetize
These changes to our current Microsoft Store fee represent a new way for you to monetize on the Windows platform. With the new fee structure, Microsoft is only accessing an additional fee when we contribute to you acquiring a new user. These changes enable us to create a world where developers are rewarded for connecting customers with experiences they love in a secure, reliable way.
The fee structure will be defined in detail in an upcoming revision to the App Developer Agreement later this year. Visit this page for current details and to sign up for a notification when the new fee structure goes into effect. Also, please refer to the FAQ below.
What applications will the new fee structure apply to?
Any consumer non-gaming app published to the Microsoft Store for PC, Windows Mixed Reality, Windows Phone or Surface Hub.
When does the new fee structure go into effect?
Later this year (2018). We’ll prompt you to accept a new version of the App Developer Agreement that outlines the Microsoft Store fee structure in detail. The new fee structure will apply to purchases made after the date listed in the App Developer Agreement.
Will the new fee structure apply to games or game subscriptions?
No. The new fee structure only applies to consumer apps on PC, Windows Mixed Reality, Windows Phone or Surface Hub. Apps categorized as Games in the Store will not be eligible for the new fee structure, even if they are available on those device types.
How does the Microsoft Store fee apply to subscriptions and other add-ons (in-app purchases)?
The new fee structure will apply to non-game, consumer app subscriptions and add-ons (in-app purchases). The fee applied to these purchases will be determined by how the user originally acquired the application. The new default 5% Store fee will apply for all transactions using Microsoft’s commerce platform and, if your customer uses a deep link to acquire your application, that’s all you’ll owe. The extra 10% customer acquisition cost will apply when Microsoft delivers you the customer through any other method, such as via a Store collection or a Microsoft Store spotlight.
All future subscription purchases and add-on (in-app) purchases for a user will be assessed the same fee percentage that was assessed when the user first acquired the application.
Will the new fee structure apply to purchases made via Microsoft Store for Business? Microsoft Store for Education?
No. The new fee only applies to individual purchases of consumer apps on PC, Windows Mixed Reality, Windows Phone or Surface Hub. If you allow your app to be offered via organizational licensing in Microsoft Store for Business and/or Microsoft Store for Education, the current Store fee will continue to apply to those purchases.
What about applications that are not games, but are available to customers on Xbox?
Any purchases made by customers on Xbox consoles, whether the product is an app or a game, will use the current fee structure.
What about applications that are available on both Microsoft Store for Windows 10 PC and Microsoft Store for Xbox One?
The new fee structure will apply to non-game consumer app acquisitions by individuals on Microsoft Store for Windows 10 PC (and the other device families mentioned above). The current fee structure will apply to acquisitions on Microsoft Store for Xbox One devices.
What will the fee structure be for applications that are available to earlier OS versions (Windows 8.x and/or Windows Phone 8.x)?
The new fee structure will apply to apps available on Microsoft Store on earlier OS versions (Windows 8.x and/or Windows Phone 8.x).

Two things you need to know about Xbox at E3 2018

How to watch the annual Xbox E3 2018 Briefing
Watch live beginning on Sunday, June 10, at 1 p.m. PDT on the official Xbox Mixer Channel or on the Mixer app for Windows 10 or Xbox One. You’ll also be able to catch a live stream of the briefing on other streaming services, which we’ll be announcing soon, as well as on the big screen at your local Microsoft Stores.  The briefing is when you’ll have a chance to check out everything from in-depth looks at previously-announced games to trailers for our unannounced titles coming in 2018 and beyond.
How to watch Inside Xbox: Live @ E3
This year will mark the first year that our hot new show, Inside Xbox, will be airing during E3. Inside Xbox: Live @ E3 will air Monday, June 11, at 3 p.m. PDT and will feature a livestream full of exclusive announcements, game demos, interviews, giveaways and more. We’ll also be streaming live on Mixer every day throughout E3 2018 starting from Tuesday, June 12, through Thursday, June 14, so keep an eye out for our full schedule coming soon.
For more about Xbox at E3, including how to win a ticket to Xbox FanFest: E3 2018, head over to Xbox Wire!

#ifdef WINDOWS – Dev Center Analytics with Hannah Jimma

Analytics are invaluable when it comes to continued success with Microsoft Store. Dev Center analytics enable developers to measure success and generate learnings about how users use their creations, and allow for targeted actions to increase reach and continuously improve the overall experience.
I met with Hannah Jimma, a program manager on the Microsoft Store team focusing on Dev Center analytics, and I learned about what analytics are available today and some new features the team is working on for the future. Among other things, we covered:
       Measuring success of acquisitions, including what data is available on the way developers are discovering your apps
       Understanding how developers are using your apps and quickly discover bugs and crashes
       Capturing feedback from your users and interacting with them
       Analyzing data that is specific to Xbox
       Trying out new features in the Dev Center with the Dev Center Insider Program
and much more. Check out the video above for the full overview and feel free to reach out on Twitter or in the comments!

Dev Center’s Year in Review: 2017

In 2017, the Dev Center Team has been hard at work bringing new features and programs to the Windows developer community. Our goal is to deliver features that will help you, as a developer, attract new customers, engage with your current Windows 10 customers and monetize your apps and games on Windows.  Today, we want to share all the new and exciting things we’ve brought to the community within the past year. Below are just some of the improvements we’ve made:
The Dev Center experience:
Experience a modern and efficient Dev Center dashboard

Use the Import/Export feature to quickly create and update Store listings
Schedule the precise date and time that your app will be available in Store
Flexible sale pricing and configuration to help promote your app

Monetization opportunities:
Xbox Live Creator’s Program – now any developer can integrate Xbox Live into their game and publish to Xbox One and Windows 10

Offer In-app purchases subscriptions with automated recurring billing (Dev Center Insider Program feature)
Desktop Bridge – bring existing apps and games to the Microsoft Store and UWP
See how Evernote used the Desktop Bridge to bring their app to Microsoft Store

Customer engagement:
Create more engaging Store listings with video trailers that could drive more acquisitions

Offer personalized content to specific segments of your customer using targeted offers
Use search terms to help optimize how your app shows up in customer searches
App & game analytics:
View near real time health analytics for your apps
Filter health data with new filters; OS release version, architecture, Sandbox and PRAID

Download CAB files for app failures in the Health report that occur on a Windows Insider release
See how many customers viewed you Store page, acquired, installed and used your apps by viewing the Acquisition funnel
View your app reviews grouped according to categories with Review insight categories to see where you should focus improvement efforts

See how your customers are engaging with Xbox features in your game with Xbox analytics
Understand the impact of any Xbox Live client errors through the Xbox Live service health tab

View acquisition reports for your Office add-ins on Dev Center
Health and Install reports for Windows desktop applications (available through the Windows Desktop Application Program)
Microsoft Ads Platform:
Join the Windows Premium Ads Publishers Program which curates a list of best in class apps and games in terms of usage, engagement and experience

Utilize the Microsoft Ad Monetization Platform that provides ad mediation service ensuring that ads from different networks are delivered to developers from a single SDK
You can now use interstitial and native ads through the Microsoft Advertising SDK
We’ve added new ad networks (Taboola, Outbrain, Revcontent, SpotX and Smartclip) to our platform to help increase fill rates and revenue
We would like to thank all the Windows developers, publishers and partners for continuing to invest in the Windows 10 ecosystem. We look forward to continuing our work to help make you successful in 2018!