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New discovery, accessibility and social feature enhancements coming to Xbox PC app

Microsoft has introduced several new features and improvements to the Xbox app for PC, focusing on social feature upgrades, new enhancements to improve game discovery and accessibility improvements. 

To improve game discovery, game cards in the app have been updated to provide more information and convenience. Now, you can view contextual metadata such as the publisher, pricing, HowLongToBeat time, upcoming Game Pass availability, and departure dates for games leaving soon. This additional information will be visible as you browse through the app's game selection. Furthermore, filtering and sorting options have been improved, allowing you to navigate game collections and your library easily. New filter options include accessibility features and game ratings, and a new sorting option based on HowLongToBeat has been introduced.

In terms of discovering new games, the app now offers curated collections. The Trending collection showcases popular games in your region, while collections powered by HowLongToBeat present options based on completion time. For example, you can explore the “Take a game break” collection featuring games that can be completed in under 5 hours or the “Clear your schedule” collection for games requiring more time to finish.

Accessibility settings have also received attention in this update. A centralised location has been introduced, allowing you to customise various accessibility settings such as animations, background images, and the ability to browse for games based on accessibility features. Additionally, you can keep your friends list, chat, and party windows visible in-game.

The friends list has been streamlined to provide an at-a-glance view of all your online friends, eliminating the need for a dedicated tab. You can even pop out the friends list onto your desktop for constant accessibility. Clicking on an active friend opens a chat window, allowing you to communicate seamlessly while browsing games. Moreover, you can now add friends more conveniently, as the app enables you to discover and add friends directly from the friends list. You can easily access a list of everyone you've recently played with and link your Steam account to connect your friends from that platform to the Xbox ecosystem.

It's important to note that these features are currently available to those signed up to the Insider program. They will roll out to everyone after a period of public testing. The Insider Program is fully open, so you can sign up for it at any time.

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