Xbox Music and Xbox Video updated on Windows 8, view most popular artists and more

Xbox Music and Xbox Video

When Xbox Music and Xbox Video first came out on Windows 8 they offered an abysmal experience. Especially when compared to the Zune desktop app, their spiritual successor. Thankfully that didn’t last too long, the Windows 8.1 refresh to both apps made them usable and enjoyable again. They’ve slowly been picking updates up over the past few months and today we’ve got another for both Xbox Video and Xbox Music.

The last update for Xbox Music came out a few weeks ago. It was remarkable for bringing back full screen artist visualizations to the music listening experience. Today we’re not getting any crazy new features in either app. Instead both are picking up minor improvements and fixes. However, after updating the app you’ll be greeted with the following changelog for Xbox Music for version 2.2.550:

  • Pin your favorite music to your Start screen to get to it quickly
  • See what’s up next and what you just heard on the improved Now Playing screen
  • Discover the most popular artists on Xbox Music on the Explore tab
  • See at a glance when a given album or song from Xbox Music is explicit

Xbox Music

That might at first seem like an outdated list of items added to Xbox Music, but it’s actually right. Check out the screenshot above and you’ll notice it plainly displays “explicit” next to the song length. That’s new in this latest version of Xbox Music and something we don’t see in earlier versions. But we’re not too sure what they mean by gaining the ability to pin favorite music, that’s always been there.

Either way, be sure to update to version 2.2.550 of Xbox Music and Xbox Video today!

Thanks for the tip Mickaël C!



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Great, but I hope the windows phone versions gets updates too. :)

Jas00555 says:

I'd imagine there's going to be a big overhaul with 8.1

thaman04 says:

WP8.1 is getting the same app as Win8.1... no worries.

Had those updates yesterday. Today an update for Skype Windows 8.1. Perhaps the US are running a day late.

L2nak says:

Fat chance you foreigner, we're just too busy watching that new Billy Ray Cyrus song. /s

paliotti says:

almost spat out my coffee while reading this lol.

vkelkar says:

I hope Microsoft adds some,unique and new features to Skype and make it completely integrated to the system.... And dialer give option to select default call handler and default dialer option ... It would be awesome.... :)

thaman04 says:

I think first they should focus on properly integrating it into the ecosystem.  Messenger worked flawlessly with the ecosystem, now they have to make Skype work properly too.

Laura Knotek says:

I'd rather see an Amazon Cloud Player app. I buy my music from Amazon.com.

EBynum says:

Me too! An Amazon Cloud Player app for Windows Phone and Windows 8.1 would be great. I wonder what's taking them so long.

theefman says:

Sorry, they're still poor, music especially, repeatedly get errors playing music from my home server yet Zune and WMP never skip a beat. Long way to go before its remotely comparable to Zune..

nizzon says:

They don't give a shit about mp3s anymore. Its all about their incomplete cloud. Erk.

mrdeezus says:

Agreed, how fucking hard is it to copy and past Zune then rename it?? I'm beginning to think that ms doesn't use their music app. Fucking lame.

Agreed. Rented a 6GB HD movie from the Xbox Video app and even after deleting it from the library, it still kept using up the same amount of disc space o_O

Can just buy the films second-hand on DVD for less than half the price anyway...

nizzon says:

Explicit? Who the hell cares? Improve usability instead.

HarveyDent89 says:

The scariest thing about the XBM app on W8 is that it's worse than the WP version. I really want to love XBM but the apps are so buggy and laggy.

Shobiz says:

The app is fine for those who have a Zune Pass. For those of us that still buy CDs and MP3s, this app is the biggest piece of shit on Windows 8 and WP8! (drops mic)

MediaCastleX says:

You still buy CDs and MP3s?? Lmao, that's SO 90s! (for the record, that's sarcasm) =P

MikeSo says:

I'm getting tired of all the Windows news on this site. I could really care less about Windows 8.

89caps says:

When you actually do care less, WPcentral might care more.

2tomtom says:

Could or couldn't mmmmm

thaman04 says:

Then you might as well leave given that Windows Phone and Windows will soon be one.

MediaCastleX says:

Ermagerd, its SO different...lol, more jokes! =P

Big Supes says:

Its got to be said, the whole Xbox Music & Video experience across Windows and Wp is a complete joke. They released Wp8, effectively, unfinished from a consumers pov. And, for a loyal wp customer upgrading from 7.8, it was a kick in the teeth. What makes this worse, a year later and we're still stuck with this abysmal Windows 8 wp companion app and a Xbox service that I'm still not entirely sure what its purpose is other than to sell me things. The whole media sync arrangement across Windows and Wp is beyond me. Just what monkey is getting away with this at Microsoft? Wp 8.1 is the last straw for them to get it right for me.

MediaCastleX says:

I dance while reading your comment, because you are having such a cow and for what? My pleasure and enjoyment...its funny to read these! =D

mrdeezus says:

App runs smooth it just lacks:
Ability to sort music by what I own and XBM pass songs
Abilty to sync with PC or tablet
Favorites heart
Related artists tab doesn't show enough
Suggested artists based on my listening
Ability to buy multiple tracks at once
aww fucknitbthey don't care...
Oh and how about bring the music search from WP to Windows 7???

agion1 says:

Not that it matters all that much, but this update came out a number of days ago. I manually check updates daily and this one stuck out to me because of the pin to start and explicit lyric thing. All of this to say, if you don't check logs, you may already have this one, so don't check now and get disappointed if nothing new shows up.

meathead88 says:

I never want to see the word "glance" again in an article until it appears in one announcing the feature on a Lumia Icon!!!!

I want my f-ing rating system back along with Auto-Playlists!!

MediaCastleX says:

When was there a system for rating f-Ing? Oh, am I reading that wrong? Lol, jk I know exactly what you mean! (can't put a heart symbol here...)

Well its stull slow compared to vlc player

Ma Rio says:

Offtopic but can I get a link for the Digitaly Imported app, I didnt know there was one for Windows 8.

herbertsnow says:

I really don't see anything wrong with Xbox music. I've had no problem with it at all. Some people just love to complain about nothing. The zune is dead, grow up.

mrdeezus says:

Have you ever used the Zune software/ If you did you would be as pissed as anyone who has.....

thaman04 says:

People complain because Zune was a beautiful and really well designed, fully featured app.  Xbox Music doesn't have half the things Zune did and as you can see people have been experiecing a lot of problems too with playback.  I'm sure these will all be ironed out before it comes to WP8.1

herbertsnow says:

Never used Zune, maybe if it made me breakfast in bed I would care. Xbox Music is all I need.

neo158 says:

Then here's a thought, why don't you use the Zune software and see what we're all complaining about!!

herbertsnow says:

I have a life, so that's a No. I have better things to do than bitch about nothing. The zune is dead, get a life.

That's sort of the problem here. I don't know what music app you used before, but it must have really lowered your expectations. I came from winamp, to WMP, to Zune, and now iTunes. I think I have also casually tested about all the others as well.

XBM offers fewer features than any player we have ever used, and the features it does have work poorly. For music lovers, it is too much of a regression.

It stinks a bit to see this site giving it any sort of positive comments. I expect honesty and critical analysis from WPC.

MediaCastleX says:

You mean for elitists? There's a reason for unhappiness and yes, the standards have something to do with that. I agree with the assessment but I'll be damned before I let anything get under MY skin! ;)

coldfilter says:

I am not elitist but XBox music for WP is crap featureless dispiriting experience. My sons 80€ android has more features

herbertsnow says:

A reply like that is why no one will take you serious. Grow up.

coldfilter says:

Its true the Xbox music on WP is crap. Unlike every phone I have owned since 2006 I can't easily make playlists from the Albums I have on my phone I can't edit playlists on my phone. Oh yes I really love the long pressing of the Fwd or Rwd button to get to point in a song! Doesn't half take me back to my cassette playing days.
Not to mention it looks crap "grey"

jnbnb says:

there is a bug, and they are not solving it. I have 3 playlist (all with different name), the App shows all with the same name. But, when I want to choose one, it choosen what it wants. :S

MediaCastleX says:

That just SOUNDS confusing...it requires intervention. =[

Cristoby says:

I just wish that the Explore screen was more personalized. They have my listening habits, why am I presented with a bunch of Autotune junkies?

willied says:

View most popular artists? They could also have a feature to view the worst artists, but it'd just be the same thing.

Adretheon says:

Not sure when it was, but MS updated their library as well. I'm finding more of my music than I used to. (special additions with extra songs) With that said, I'm still missing a lot of basic CD's that won't link to the cloud cause Xbox doesn't have it. Which is a shame, but it's doable(same with no cd ripping support)

What they need to fix/figure out is why I should sync my music to begin with. I don't have(nor plan on getting) a music pass, but that doesn't mean I shouldn't be able to download my pc songs to my phone while on wifi. And syncing my music doesn't gain me anything in regards to my account either. I'll still lose all my songs if my computer dies.(which has happened before and I had to re-rip all my music that I didn't purchase through Xbox)

gar216 says:

I would really like to see podcast support come back. Media syncing was actually what brought me to WP back in 2011. Zune offered the perfect media management solution for what I needed. When W8/WP8 came along, this ended. I am currently using slapdash but it just isn't as good as it was on W7/WP7.

jomarr says:

Aww I was hoping for last.fm support so I can move on from iTunes.

XBM is still really bad. It drove me to iTunes after I lost Zune. #BringBackZune

smoledman says:

I really wish XBox Music would get 2 things on both Windows 8 & Phone:

- the ability to repeat a song

- hi-speed scrubbing using a knub-widget like on iOS & Android. Actually XBox Music on Windows 8 already has this, but for some reason Phone does not.

AndyD33 says:

"Especially when compared to the Zune desktop app, their spiritual successor."

Sam, I think that should be "Especially when compared to the Zune desktop app, their spiritual predeccessor"

leoberto says:

The web app on music.xbox.com was also updated recently

garak0410 says:

Getting better. What I'd like next is to be able to add music to my cloud collection that they do not have in their catalog. I've got many albums I'd like to upload that they do not offer.

pmich says:

I know music that i purchase through XBOX gets sync'd to the cloud and is available everywhere, but is there a way to sync "subscription" music up to the cloud so that it's always available?