It seems that Amazon's Alexa and Google's Assistant are everywhere these days, from our cars to our thermostats, reading us the news, weather and misunderstanding our music requests. It turns out they may be on the way to conquering yet another frontier: gaming consoles.
Windows Central has uncovered evidence (from a "reliable source") that Microsoft is integrating Alexa and Google Assistant into upcoming Xbox One builds.
Currently, the console supports Cortana, Microsoft's voice assistant, but the leaked screenshot shows a new window in Xbox One's Kinect & Devices menu where users can enable all three voice assistants.
"To get started, enable digital assistants below, then search for Xbox in the assistant app's skills on your phone," the page instructs. This means after enabling assistants, users will need to download an Xbox-specific skill in the Alexa and Google Assistant apps. The voice-assistant features these skills will enable remain unknown. It's possible you'll be able to navigate the Xbox interface, launch or pause a game, or even turn your console on and off with voice commands.
While it's available in Windows PCs, Cortana powers exactly one U.S.-only smart speaker, and Microsoft has dropped Kinect, the platform that previously allowed users to control the Xbox with voice commands. However, Microsoft has been working with Amazon to integrate Alexa with Cortana; adding support for Alexa and Google Assistant would bring that voice control back to its popular gaming console.
Keep an eye out for an official announcement at E3.