Xbox Game Bar New StuffSource: Microsoft

The Xbox Game Bar is a nifty new addition to Windows 10, allowing you to instantly access various functions and features right from hitting Windows Key + G.

Using it is relatively straight forward once you get used to it, but at first, it might seem a bit odd. Here's how you can quickly start a cross-platform voice chat Xbox Party with friends on Xbox Live using the Xbox Game Bar.

Get the Xbox Game Bar and sign-in

  1. Hit Windows Key + G to bring up the Xbox Game Bar
  2. If you don't have it, you can download it from the Microsoft Store here.
  3. Select the Xbox Social widget at the top; the icon looks like two people on the right side. 👫
  4. On first use, you may be prompted to sign-in with a Microsoft Account. Use the same one you've used previously on Xbox or any other Windows 10 device.

    Xbox Game Bar Sign InSource: Windows Central

Adding friends to Xbox Live

  1. Adding friends to Xbox Live for chatting and messaging is done via the Xbox Social Widget, which you open by selecting the far-right icon that looks like two people.

    Xbox Game Bar Social WidgetSource: Windows Central

  2. Simply enter the Gamertag of the friend you want to add into the search bar.

    Xbox Game Bar Social AddSource: Windows Central

  3. Right click, then select follow.

    Xbox Game Bar Social FollowSource: Windows Central

  4. Hit the X in the search box. Now when you search for that user, they should be in your friends list. You can right click to view their profile, send messages, and invite them to parties.

Invite friends into an Xbox party using the Xbox Game Bar

  1. Making parties revolves around the Xbox Social widget, pictured here.

    Xbox Game Bar Social WidgetSource: Windows Central

  2. Simply right click on the friend you want to add to a voice chat, and select Invite to Party.

    Xbox Game Bar Social InviteSource: Windows Central

  3. The Xbox Chat widget will load up, and start connecting you and your friend.

    Xbox Game Bar Social Invite Party ChatSource: Windows Central

  4. The bar across the top of the chat lets you control the privacy, mic mute, and on-screen overlay widget. You can also hit the padlock to make the party private and invite-only, or hit the door icon to leave.

Message friends using the Xbox Game Bar

  1. You send messages using the Xbox Social widget pictured here.

    Xbox Game Bar Social InviteSource: Windows Central

  2. Simply right-click on the friend you want to send a message to, and select Open Chat.
  3. It will open up the Xbox Chat widget as seen here, allowing you to send messages, hitting Enter on your keyboard to send.

    Xbox Game Bar MessagingSource: Windows Central

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