With Windows 8 now available in stores and the new Xbox 360 dashboard update on consoles, Microsoft has gone ahead and updated the Xbox Companion app on Windows Phone, turning it into the long-awaited Xbox SmartGlass app.
Xbox SmartGlass is more than just a simple name change. While the app still supports basic navigation and media playback controls, as well as the ability to search the Xbox LIVE Marketplace and launch content, it now supports content-specific interactive experiences with select games and apps. Send music and videos to and from your smartphone or tablet, discover who’s in a particular scene while watching a movie on Xbox Video, queue up songs in Dance Central 3, and much more. The possibilities are endless.
SmartGlass is also deeply integrated with the new Internet Explorer app on Xbox 360, letting you interact with content on your big screen as if it were on a touch device. You can even transfer websites from your TV screen to your smartphone. Keyboard input is directed to the phone as well, eliminating the need for a Chatpad accessory. The inclusion of an Xbox Guide button and asynchronous connectivity – allowing you to use the app in a limited capacity if you’re not signed in on your console – are welcome additions too.
I’ve you already have the Xbox Companion app on Windows Phone, all you need to do is download the update. But if you haven’t tried it before, we highly recommend doing so. Xbox SmartGlass is currently available on Windows Phone and Windows 8, but Microsoft plans to release the app on Android and iOS as well.