Using virtual assistants like Alexa or Google Assistant can be beneficial in so many ways. Apart from being a convenient one-stop shop for answers to any query you may have, they can be a huge time saver that allows you to streamline the hands-free use of compatible devices within your vicinity. For avid video gamers, this includes your Xbox Series X|S.
The setup process that’ll let you control your Xbox console with either Google Assistant or Alexa is pretty easy to follow. Whichever virtual assistant you use regularly, you may need to have access to its corresponding app on your preferred mobile device in order to begin hands-free use of your video game machine, so download them from your mobile phone’s official app store. For Google users, prepare to have both the Google Home and Google Assistant apps installed — if they didn’t already come preinstalled on your phone — for an easier setup process. Make sure you’re properly signed into all of the apps that you may need access to for the setup duration, as well.
To ensure that connecting your chosen virtual assistant to your Xbox Series X|S goes without a hitch, there are certain things you need to go through in your video game console’s settings. Press the Xbox button (X) to launch the guide and follow these steps:
After going through these settings on your Xbox console, it’s time to use your mobile device to complete setting up the connection between your digital assistant and Xbox console.
To set up a connection between Google and your video game console, launch the Google Home app on your phone and then follow a few simple steps detailed in an Xbox support document.
You may need to type in the Microsoft login credentials associated with your Xbox account to proceed. Once the link has been established, you will be asked to choose the appropriate Xbox device type you want to control and set up preferences within the Google Home app. After these final steps, you may now start using voice commands to control your Xbox Series X|S console through Google Assistant. You can say either “Hey Google” or “OK Google” followed by a command that is applicable to your Xbox’s list of functions.
To begin setting up Alexa on your Xbox Series X|S console, ensure that you’ve fiddled with all the necessary Xbox settings mentioned above. Once that’s done, go to the Xbox Store on your console, look up “Alexa” in the search box, and download the Alexa for Xbox app. Once the download is complete, follow the onscreen prompts to finalize the installation. Do note that this is an optional step and that the app may not be available in your region.
Before proceeding, make sure that your Xbox device is on and that you’re logged in. Additionally, double-check that the power mode is indeed set to “instant-on” and that the digital assistant feature is enabled. Depending on where you are located, you may be led to an “Xbox” Alexa Skill — which is only available in Australia, Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Mexico, Spain, the U.K., and the U.S. (via Microsoft). You will need to download and enable that skill by supplying the Microsoft login credentials associated with your Xbox account.
Alternatively, you can also go to “Skills & Games” within the Alexa app, search for “Xbox,” and download the skill. It may take Alexa around 45 seconds to locate your Xbox Series X|S and connect to it. Follow the prompts on your mobile device to finish establishing the connection between your Xbox console and Alexa. Once all the steps are done, you can start controlling your Xbox console via Alexa by uttering “Alexa” followed by a voice command that is relevant to your Xbox’s functionality.
When using the phrases “OK Google” or “Hey Google” to activate Google Assistant or “Alexa” to launch Amazon’s eponymous virtual assistant, you will need to mention your Xbox console by name within the command so it knows what device you are trying to control. By default, the console name is set to Xbox, which is fine if you only have one console. However, some gamers may have multiple Xbox devices, and that’s where modifying your console’s name becomes important.
While it’s possible to change the names of devices listed in your chosen virtual assistant’s respective mobile app, the simpler way to do it is to change the Xbox’s name directly on the console (via Xbox). To do this, press the Xbox button on your controller and then do the following:
You may need to restart your Xbox for the new console name to take effect.
You can employ Google Assistant or Alexa to turn the Xbox console on or off, launch video games and apps, control playback of media, and even record gameplay, to name a few. Here are some of the voice commands you can try with Google Assistant, and the full list can be found on the Xbox website. First, say “Hey Google” or “OK Google,” then the following to:
Alexa has a wider variety of command types for the Xbox console; some work specifically for people who have an Xbox Game Pass subscription or have the Alexa for Xbox app installed. Standard commands take the structure of, “Alexa, tell Xbox” or “Alexa, ask Xbox,” followed by the task. From the complete list of potential Xbox voice commands to use with Alexa, here are a couple of notable ones you can try out. Say “Alexa, tell/ask Xbox to” then the following phrases to:
For either digital assistant, if you modified the console name, say the new name in the command phrase instead of “Xbox.”
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