Microsoft has unveiled the next two apps in its continued movement towards universal apps across all Windows 10 devices.
There is also a very significant branding change with these new apps and that is the removal of the term Xbox from their titles.
The current apps in Windows 8.1 are called Xbox Music and Xbox Video and while Microsoft is not officially commenting on any branding changes right now it certainly appears there is a deliberate move to separate these apps from their Xbox labels. It actually makes sense as these apps will be available on all Windows 10 platforms and maybe, just maybe, they want to once again focus the Xbox brand from music, video and entertainment back to its gaming roots. More to come I am sure.
As for the apps you can grab them each on Windows 10 through these links or search for music preview or video preview in the Beta Store (gray tiled):
My own experience with these apps is a mixed bag and yes I understand they are previews.
The Music Preview worked well, easily integrated/synced my OneDrive music collection and even gave an in depth explanation of how cleaning up duplicates worked. All of my playlists were also brought into the app and building new ones worked great. The interface is not final and can be quite rough around the edges so that should get remedied in future builds.
Some of the enhancements Microsoft states they have planned for those future builds are:
- Browse and buy music in the Windows Store Beta– until then you can still buy music in the existing Music App
- Right-click context menus
- Better back button for easier app navigation
- Dark color theme
- Compact mode
- Settings improvements
- Improved support for accessibility
As for the Video Preview – a complete and utter failure on my end. I added a few MP4, AVI and WMV files to the local video directory and the app can successfully see the thumbnails but every one of them fail to play with an error. So I then tried movies and TV episodes and they all failed as well. I need to do some further research on this but I can say that the fix proposed in Microsoft’s blog post about the new apps did not rectify the error.
Microsoft also has a list of things to come with the Video Preview:
- Discover great new movies and TV shows in the Windows Store Beta – until then you can still get them in the existing Video App or the new web Store at here.
- Download movies and TV for offline play
- New device management so you can play your downloads offline more reliably on the devices you care about
- Improved search results
- Movie reviews and cast information
- Settings improvements
Hopefully, things will improve as new builds come out because the clock is ticking.
Be sure to visit our Gallery: Music and Video Preview Apps on Windows 10 to see screenshots of the new apps.