Microsoft has two versions of its Xbox One SmartGlass app in the Play Store—regular and beta. The beta app is getting an update today with some previously announced (and pretty neat) functionality. However, you'll only get the full effect if you're in a supported country, which for once is not the US.
A number of new and interesting features are headed towards the Xbox One, but I'm going to ignore most of them. What has caught out attention is the ability to stream TV to Android devices using the SmartGlass app. The feature will join the Xbox One Digital TV Tuner in coming to various European countries in the months ahead. It will allow users to stream TV to other smartphones and tablets while continuing to play games on the Xbox One.
Microsoft may have its own smartphone platform, but when so many Xbox gamers walk around with Android phones in their pockets, it would be a shame to ignore them (or their wallets). So the company has rolled out another update to its Xbox One SmartGlass beta app, and this one introduces the ability to purchase games and add-ons for the console remotely. It's a nice feature for people who have run out to buy an Xbox One with or without Kinect.
Microsoft and Google are ostensibly competitors, but Redmond seems to be setting aside its mobile aspirations in the name of supporting its new game console... and considering all the money in gaming, it's easy to understand why. So in addition to both Xbox 360 and Xbox One versions of the official SmartGlass app, there's now a separate beta build of the Xbox One app.
The beta version was introduced to help test a series of incoming features, which are outlined in this post on Microsoft's official Xbox portal.
A few months ago, Microsoft announced the SmartGlass app for Xbox, a companion application that allows you to navigate and control your console from your phone or, up until recently, 7" tablets. Now, version 1.5 has rolled out that adds support for larger slates. Including 10" devices like the Nexus 10, which is kind of great.
On a larger tablet, the UI actually doesn't look much different from the interface on the TV itself, so it's extremely intuitive.
There's a startling amount of crossover between people who use Android for their mobile needs and Windows and Xbox for their desktop and console gaming. The SmartGlass app has been a definite hit for Xbox 360 users who also have Windows Phone 7 devices... all eight of them. Now Android users can join the fun: Microsoft's released the official SmartGlass app for Android, available for free in the Play Store.
If you're not familiar with SmartGlass, it controls just about every aspect of the media-friendly Xbox 360 aside from actual game control.