Hands-on with the Xbox Avatars app on Windows 10 Preview

It's been a while since I've edited my Xbox avatar. If you're in the same boat, today is a good day to change it up. I've been playing with the Avatars app that has just been released for Windows 10 Technical Preview. It isn't quite finished yet, but you can still play around with the app and provide feedback. Want to see it action? Watch my hands-on video.

When you open Avatars, your current character shows up in the middle, with menu buttons to the left. Tap the hamburger button to understand what the icons mean. The Dress Up section is where you want to go. This lets you change your clothes and accessories.

You can also change your appearance by selecting Edit Avatar. You can customize your character's shape, skin, hair, facial features, and more.

Tapping the marketplace icon opens the Avatar Store in a web browser. There are a few items that are free to download, but many of the items have prices similar to mobile apps and games.

An interesting section is called the Photobooth. When you try to open it, you get a message that says it is coming soon. Perhaps it's a section where you can take a screenshot of your avatar, which can be shared on your social networks.

There's a settings button on the lower left corner, but only one option is currently available. You can turn off the background music from here.

What are some improvements I'd like to see in an update? I'd like to be able to spin the avatars around. I'd also like the marketplace to be within the app itself instead of forwarding us to a web browser.

Go play with your Xbox avatar today and let us know what you think of the new Avatars app for Windows 10 Preview!

Mark Guim is Video Editor at Windows Central. He switched to Windows because the MacBook Pro isn't Pro enough. You can follow him on Twitter at @markguim.

  • Seems unique.. Would be nice to have the same version for the phone too..
  • Yes.
  • We have Xbox extras app for phones, it does the job very well.
  • I guess we eventually will with the whole universal app thing
  • Nice!
  • Shouldn't this be built into the Xbox app?
  • Microsoft have indicated via their job postings that Avatars will be leaving the fold of Xbox and being used across a wide range of Windows experiences.
  • I almost forgot about the Avatars
  • Me too. Do they still have that "Gay" posture In Windows 10?
  • Your comment doesn't offend me but it will offend others.
  • Not ment to offend. I only ment the Avatars stand with their hips to one-side.
  • Camp posture is slightly less offensive maybe.
  • So do a lot of women.
  • True, but why do all the men? Just saying!
  • Though that people were gay because of with who they like for kissing and having sex, not because of the way they stand. ;)
  • Don't defend yourself dude. You can say gay all you want. Most actual gay people that ive met both men and woman use the word gay such "oh thats gay" ect much like the "F" word its versatile. Now "faggot" or "dike" on the other hand, not cool.
  • Thanks for the support.
    I've just always wondered why Microsoft designed the men and women to stand with the same postures.
  • Cuz both men and women can stand in the same postures in real life.
  • Gay can mean happy and isn't always derogatory
  • Unfortunately I'm getting an error when trying to download the app. Anyone else having problems?
  • I can't download it either. Keeps saying there's a problem at their end. Given up trying for now.
  • Will it be universal?
  • I think it's safe to assume the majority of apps coming out of Microsoft for Windows 10 will be universal.  
  • Totally used to show off avatar with wp7, completely forgot about it since I was hoping they'd be more involved in the phone.
  • Am I the only person with an Xbox Extras app on my phone that lets me do exactly what this app does?
  • If you've moved over to Xbox One they have pretty much removed all is of avatars. I guess this is them bringing it back. There are no games on XONE that can utilize the avatar system like the Xbox 360 did.
  • I was thinking the same thing. Not that I really make use of the app but, doesn't this already exist and they're just porting/updating for PC?!
  • It's one of those now you see it, now you don't platform features. It comes and goes. Xbox One made it go, glad they are making an effort to bring it back.
  • "Go play with your avatar"? WTF!? Jk
  • All the apps are being revamped for Windows 10.
  • Avatars have become non existent with the Xbox one...I forgot what mine even looks like.
  • They need more beard options! :)
  • Photobooth is likely to be exactly what we have on Xbox One (and 360 I think) where we can choose a pose, background color/pattern, and rotate and frame the avatar to take a "photo" of it.
  • Good to see it's all hands on deck to prioritize fixing the UX feature gap between 8.1 and 10TP. I bet this one was waaaaay up there on uservoice. o_O
  • Uservoice, the next thing an MS exec will point out as their biggest mistake for ignoring.
  • Photo booth would be nice if it provided face mapping to create an avatar.
  • Since the release i can't download it. The popup window says that there seems to be an error on their side and i should try it later.
  • Seems nice
  • Xbox one needs to bring avatars back
  • Finally an avatar tool. GREAT!
  • On my Win 10 TP 10049 system says "Upgrade to W8 or more to install....... Any idea ? (original install before preview was 8.1