When Microsoft asked Xbox gamers what feature they wanted most, an overwhelming majority said their top request was that the Xbox would work with more digital assistants. The result? Starting today, you can now use Google Assistant and most Google devices to control your Xbox One.
So how does it work? You can connect the two platforms by using Microsoft’s new Xbox Action for Google Assistant software. According to a blog post on Xbox Wire, you’ll need to join this Xbox group, sign in to your Xbox, and then add it as a device inside the Google Home app on iOS or Android.
Once everything is setup you’ll be able to start up the Xbox using your voice, launch apps like YouTube, take screenshots and video, and start games. If your TV supports CEC you’ll also be able to raise and lower the volume, which is a handy feature.
According to information sent to TechRadar, the Xbox Action for Google Assistant is compatible with any Google Assistant-enabled smart speaker or smart displays, including the Google Nest Hub Max, or any Android mobile device.
Two's company, three's a crowd
If this sounds like a story you’ve read before, it might be because you heard about Microsoft adding support for Alexa voice commands last year... or you've used Cortana on Xbox, which basically shipped with the console back in 2014.
The addition of a new third voice assistant might seem like overkill on a gaming console, but the good news is that now, regardless of which service you prefer, you’ll have access to a similar set of voice commands.
So when does the integration begin? According to Microsoft's post, the new Xbox Action for the Google Assistant is available via a public beta on Xbox One today and is available to all customers in English during the beta period with support for other languages later this year.
- Here's a handy guide to the Google Assistant
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Nick Pino is Managing Editor, TV and AV for TechRadar's sister site, Tom's Guide. Previously, he was the Senior Editor of Home Entertainment at TechRadar, covering TVs, headphones, speakers, video games, VR and streaming devices. He's also written for GamesRadar+, Official Xbox Magazine, PC Gamer and other outlets over the last decade, and he has a degree in computer science he's not using if anyone wants it.