Windows Updates, Xbox One Updates To Unify Console And PC via Threshold

Windows updates and Xbox One updates under the name of Threshold are promising to make a unified operating system a reality.

As previously reported by The Inquisitr, the Xbox One vs PS4 battle got heated with Microsoft combating PS4 sales number with billions of zombies.

You might be surprised to learn the Xbox One runs three separate operating systems. The main Xbox One operating system is focused on games and runs lean and mean. For the Xbox One, Windows 8 has been stripped down and is designed to run non-gaming Win8 apps like Skype and Hulu. The third operating system is based upon Microsoft’s hypervisor virtualization software and is responsible for controlling communications between the two software layers and allows multiple apps to run at the same time while the Xbox 360 was limited to one. In fact, the Xbox One breakdown revealed the inside was almost exactly like a PC.

So, yes, that means Windows updates will now affect your Xbox One. Unfortunately, it may have already have. One of the Xbox One updates could cause an error that could brick your game console although it was never stated whether or not Windows updates were at fault or not.

Unified Operating Systems

Windows 8 was advertised as the first unified operating system and one of the new Windows 8.1 features synchronizes certain user settings and files across multiple devices, from your Windows 8.1 desktop to the Surface tablet to Windows 8.1 phones. But what is a unified operating system? The concept is to have the same operating system between multiple devices, from smartphones to tablets to PCs to even the Xbox One operating system. In the future, it’s possible we’ll have only one smart device that will switch modes based upon what it’s plugged into, whether it be a desktop port or a gaming machine augmented with extra processing power.

And Windows updates like Threshold will take us a little close to that futuristic goal. Named after a planet in the Halo gaming universe, Windows Threshold will affect Xbox One, Windows and Windows Phone. Exactly what we’ll be getting is a mystery at this time, although Microsoft has hinted even the Xbox One will received a core set of “high value activities” which focus on Microsoft Office, Bing, IT management, and something labeled as “serious fun.”

How might this work? If you’ve already used an Xbox One with its Kinect 2.0 you kind of know already how Bing and apps are integrated. The long term idea is that you can buy one app from the Microsoft store and have it function on any Windows-based device, from your PC to your phone to your Xbox One. Even some settings and files can be synchronized, which leads to the possibility of using voice control to dictate notes via Office and then have it automatically be saved to all your other devices’ My Documents folder via SkyDrive.

Sounds neat but it’s not quite here yet. In the short term Microsoft has already released one of the first Xbox One updates that fixes these issues:

  • Addresses SmartGlass issues for some users when coming in and out of connected standby
  • Addresses multiplayer issues for some users when re-joining games
  • Addresses issues with inconsistent notifications for some users
  • Addresses dashboard performance for some users
  • Offers improvements for Xbox One’s TV, system update, and content update services for scaling over time
  • Updated wireless networking driver to improve connectivity issues for some users

Windows Threshold is expected to be released in the first half of 2015, with smaller Windows updates known as Windows 8.1 Update 1 expected in 2014. Whether or not Xbox One updates will follow suit is currently unknown.