Have you ever found yourself gaming on Xbox One and wished you could just say, "Alexa, start Destiny 2?" Well, you're in luck.

Recently, Microsoft and Amazon partnered up so that users would be able to access Cortana on Alexa devices and Alexa on Cortana devices. Now, the pair are extending that agreement, with Microsoft announcing it is testing Alexa support on the Xbox One console. There are a few limitations to this test, however, like that you must be an Xbox Insider who uses US English. Here's what you need to know.

How to use Alexa or Cortana to control your Xbox One

Let's back up for one minute, first. The team at Xbox has dabbled in offering voice controls in the past, so that users can easily interact with their Xbox console. Examples include through the Kinect and headsets. Now, starting with "select Xbox US Insiders", it's offering voice support with a new Xbox Skill that will enable users to easily interact with Xbox One through their Cortana- and Alexa-enabled devices.

For instance if you have the skill enabled on your Echo and you’re a part of the Insider preview, just say “Alexa, start Rocket League,” and this voice command will automatically turn on your console, sign you in, and launch your game, according to Microsoft.

Here’s how to get started:

Cortana users

  1. Sign into the Xbox you want to control.
  2. On your Windows 10 PC, click here.
  3. Sign in with your Microsoft account to link the skill (here).
  4. Now, try a command.

Alexa users

  1. Sign into the Xbox you want to control.
  2. Click here, sign in with your Amazon Account.
  3. Click Enable.
  4. Sign in with your Microsoft account to link the skill (here).
  5. Let Alexa discover your console.
  6. Follow the instructions to pair your console with Alexa.
  7. Now, try a command.

Which Alexa or Cortana devices work with Xbox One?

The Xbox Skill works with Cortana- and Alexa-enabled devices including a Windows 10 PC, Amazon Echo, Harman Kardon Invoke, and Sonos One. Microsoft said the Cortana and Alexa apps on iOS and Android will also support voice commands to control your Xbox One console.

MicrosoftHow To Use Alexa Or Cortana To Control Your Xbox One By Voice image 2

Voice commands that work with Xbox One

With the new Xbox Skill, you can use voice commands to adjust volume, launch games and apps, start and stop broadcasts on Mixer, capture screenshots, and more. So, just say the name of your assistant, followed by one such command. Some examples:

  • Alexa/Cortana, tell Xbox to open [app name].
  • Alexa/Cortana, tell Xbox to turn on.
  • Alexa/Cortana, tell Xbox to start Sea of Thieves.
  • Alexa/Cortana, tell Xbox to pause.
  • Alexa/Cortana, tell Xbox to turn it up.
  • Alexa/Cortana, tell Xbox to record that.
  • Alexa/Cortana, tell Xbox to start a party.
  • Alexa/Cortana, start [game name].
  • Alexa/Cortana, pause.
  • Alexa/Cortana, play.
  • Alexa/Cortana, watch [app name].
  • Alexa/Cortana, turn on [device name].
  • Alexa/Cortana, turn off [device name].
  • Alexa/Cortana, volume up on [device name].
  • Alexa/Cortana, volume down on [device name].
  • Alexa/Cortana, mute [device name].

Visit the Xbox Insider Subreddit for more commands. You can also just say “Ask Xbox what can I say?” to learn about more commands.

Can anyone use Alexa or Cortana with Xbox One?

This is a test limited to Xbox Insiders in the US. Microsoft said the Xbox Skill is rolling out to Xbox Insider rings gradually. To check if you are currently eligible to test the skill, see if the Digital Assistant setting is visible on your console in Settings > Devices. If it doesn’t appear, then Microsoft said to "be patient," as it is "working quickly to add more Insider rings to the beta".

Become an Xbox Insider

The Xbox Insider Program allows Xbox fans to give feedback on the latest Xbox One System updates, as well as features and games still in development on the both the Xbox One console and Windows 10 PCs. To join (free of charge) and learn more, go here.

Want to know more?

See Microsoft's blog post for more details.