Microsoft’s Xbox App Embraces Portable Gaming with Latest Update

The updated Xbox app from Microsoft acknowledges the rise of portable PC gaming, with a new compact mode suited for smaller screens. Portable consoles like the Valve Steam Deck and Lenovo Legion GO allow gamers to take their favorite PC games on the go, but the smaller screens can make traditional UI elements difficult to navigate. Microsoft’s solution is to reduce the sidebar to a series of navigable icons, leaving the majority of the screen for explanatory text. This makes it easier to understand and navigate through the app on smaller screens. Users can activate the compact mode by clicking on their profile in the top-left corner of the app and turning on the toggle for “Compact mode.” Microsoft is also collaborating with hardware makers like Asus to make this view the default. In addition to the compact mode, other features are being added to the app, such as tweaks to notifications and a “Gaming Services Repair Tool” to troubleshoot any issues with the Gaming Services required to launch the Xbox app on PC. Users will also be able to redeem rewards on their console with phone authentication.