Evidence of Windows 8 apps on Xbox One presumably in front of us the whole time

It’s no secret that your Xbox One will be more than just a game console when it launches later this year. There’s of course the media aspects that are being expanded on from the Xbox 360, namely video and music capabilities. But it could be so much more than with rumors and hints of Windows 8 apps and games working on the machine. The latest fuel to the fire comes from Justin Angel who noticed something that’s been in front of all of us for a long time.

We didn’t really cover it here at Windows Phone Central, but earlier this year a development kit for the next-generation Xbox appeared on an eBay auction. The seller also happened to be leaking a lot of information about next-generation consoles before he was greeted by a    police raid and had his computer confiscated. The rise and fall of the individual is told really well by Stephen Totilo over at Kotaku. You should go read it and check out some of the screenshots supplied by SuperDaE, the hacker behind the information and eBay sale of the development kit.

One screenshot from the story caught the attention of Justin Angel, who previously worked at both Microsoft and Nokia. The screenshot shows a supposed file directory for Homefront 2. The game was originally being developed by THQ, but the company has since filed for bankruptcy and is now being developed by Crytek.

Justin noticed something quite interesting about the file directory, a specific file to be exact. Inside the file directory was “AppxManifest.xml” which indicates a Windows 8 WinRT app. That’s in conjunction with the “DurangoLauncher.exe”, which he suspects is used to launch the Xbox One game. Durango is believed to be the internal codename for the Xbox One.

While it’s not hard to fake screenshots like the one above, nearly all the information supplied by SuperDaE has checked out since. Plus we know the Xbox One is basically running three operating systems at once. You have a system OS to run apps like Skype and Internet Explorer, the “Xbox OS” which will power the games, and a layer that uses tech from Microsoft’s Hyper-V to switch between the two instantaneously. Many people have suspected that the system OS will be where developers, like yourself, will be able to develop and target for games and apps. Microsoft even hinted at such a possibility at the end of Build by telling developers to start building for the Xbox One by developing for Windows 8.

Don’t forget, indie developers can self-publish on the Xbox One.

What are your predictions for the relation between Windows and the Xbox One from a developers perspective?

Source: Kotaku, Twitter, Twitter

Thanks for the heads up Justin! 

Sam Sabri