Microsoft will add external hard drive support to the Xbox One this June via firmware update. Along with this long-desired feature will be several improvements and options for automatic sign-ins, real-name support, and SmartGlass.
While external hard drives will be supported for the Xbox One, they must meet certain requirements. The hard drives must support USB 3.0 and have at minimum 256GB of unused space. If the player wishes, two hard drives can be plugged into the console simultaneously. Once the device(s) are plugged in, gamers can set either external hard drive as the default drive for downloads.
Another change for the Xbone involves automatic sign-ins. Since the console no longer requires a Kinect to function, automatics sign-ins can be enabled without the Kinect attached to the console.
Further concerning accounts, a user's real name can now be displayed for those on their Friends List. Friends can also be selected individually if the user only wants some of them to see his or her real name.
The firmware update will also include support for several new SmartGlass features. These features will let users customize their Xbox One pins by touching their tablet and will also receive alerts when friends are on Twitch. SmartGlass will also be able to serve as a universal remote and provide OneGuide TV listings.
One final note about the firmware update: this will mark the end of the Xbox Live Gold requirement to use services such as YouTube, Twitch, and Internet Explorer.
With the many demanded changes Microsoft is bringing to the Xbox One, it may not be very long before Microsoft takes center stage in the gaming industry like it once did in the previous console generation.