Microsoft releases June 2016 Developer Preview for UWP on Xbox One

Mark Coppock

If you’re a developer working on porting an app to the Windows 10 Universal Windows Platform, or starting a new app, then you’ve likely been working with the Developer Preview for UWP on Xbox One tools. If so, then you’ll be happy to know that Microsoft has released the June 2016 version, and it’s bringing a few fixes and new functionality.

Here’s what’s new:

Mouse mode is now enabled by default

Mouse mode is now enabled by default for XAML and Hosted Web Apps. We strongly recommend you turn this off and optimize for directional controller navigation. To learn how to turn mouse mode off, see How to disable mouse mode. For more information on how to build great apps for Xbox, see Designing for Xbox and TV.

Extended UWP API surface area is now functional on the console

Additional UWP APIs are now functional on the Xbox console. For more information about UWP API support, see UWP features that aren’t yet supported on Xbox.

Background music and audio capabilities

You can now play music and audio from an app that is running in the background.

XAML improvements

The following improvements have been made to the XAML platform:

  • The focus rectangle is now styled for a television 10-foot experience.
  • Xbox sounds are now embedded in the XAML platform.
  • XY focus navigation between UI elements has been improved.

You can now change the size of allocated developer storage on the console

A new setting in the Dev Home app allows you to increase or decrease the size of the allocated developer storage on your console. For more information about changing the size of your allocated developer storage, see Introduction to Xbox One tools.

UWP on various platforms
UWP on various platforms

WDP tool enhancements

The following improvements have been made to the Windows Device Portal (WDP) Tool for Xbox:

  • The tool includes additional console settings. For more information about console settings, see the /ext/settings reference topic.
  • Users can be signed in and out on the console. For more information about users, see the /ext/user reference topic.
  • You can now capture a screenshot of the console. For more information about taking a screenshot, see the /ext/screenshot reference topic.
  • The tool can deploy a loose file build of your app. For more information about loose file builds, see the /api/app/packagemanager/register reference topic.
  • Developer files on your console can be accessed from File Explorer on your development PC. For more information about accessing files through File Explorer, see the /ext/smb/developerfolder reference topic.

There are some known issues to keep in mind before updating, which are detailed here. Additional details are as follows:

If you are already enrolled in the UWP developer preview program and have activated Developer Mode on your Xbox One console, it will be automatically updated to the new build in the next day or so or you can start the update yourself by going to Settings | System | Console info & updates and clicking the button there. If the button is grayed out and says No update available, then you either are not currently in Developer Mode or you already have the June 2016 Developer Preview build installed. When the June 2016 Developer Preview build is installed, the OS version you will see in the Console info & updates page is 10.0.14352.1024 (rs1_xbox_rel_1606.160609-1700).

If you are not yet enrolled in the developer preview program, now is a great time to check it out. You can find more information about how to enroll on the Getting Started page.

The ability to run Windows 10 UWP apps on the Xbox One is a tremendous value to the platform and its users. If you’re a developer and are developing apps to run on Xbox One, let us know in the comments what you think of the June 2016 update.