Xbox Snap feature unlikely to ever return

Microsoft has said it is unlikely to restore the Xbox’s “Snap” ability in a future update.

That’s according to Xbox engineering lead Eden Marie, who noted on Twitter that: “While we all miss snap, I don’t think it’s coming back.”

Snap was a key feature – and one of the few selling points – of the Xbox One at its launch. The handy ability let you stick an app to one side of your screen while continuing to play games alongside.

Snap was useful for a few things. You could have a YouTube video or Twitch stream going while you played a game, for example, letting you keep on top of live sports or events. Alternatively, you could use the feature to watch walkthrough videos as you played.

You could also dock the system’s Achievement app, letting you track progress to your next unlock on-screen in real time.

Sadly, Microsoft binned off Snap in 2017 as part of the Xbox One’s mid-generation UI refresh, along with other bits and pieces of bloat. This paved the way for the dashboard interface used today on Xbox One and Xbox Series X/S.

At the time, the company said this decision had been taken to improve the Xbox’s overall speed and resources – and those who never used Snap probably never looked back.

Microsoft’s original Xbox One dashboard was a sluggish thing, poorly designed and originally optimised for gesture controls using the console’s packed-in Kinect camera. The less said about all that the better. But Snap had some fans – and its loss remains one of the few parts of Xbox from that era I look back on fondly.

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