Alexa can start up Xbox Game Pass downloads now

Alexa, get me Yakuza. All of them.

Smart speakers can do a lot: control your music, maintain a grocery list, and wake you up in the morning. Now, you can also tell them to start downloading some Halo to your Xbox.

Today, Amazon and Microsoft announced a new Alexa skill that will allow the smart speaker to download Xbox Game Pass games to connected Xbox consoles. It doesn’t require any special invocations either—according to a press release, you can just ask Alexa to initiate the download by saying “Alexa, download (whatever game) from Xbox Game Pass” and then link their accounts through the Alexa app.

Alexa can also read off what’s popular, what’s new or leaving the lineup, and the user can also enquire if specific games are available. I tried it just now with my Echo Dot, and it definitely works.

I don’t have an Xbox Series X or S, but if I do ever pick up Microsoft’s console, it’s novel to me that I’ll be able to remotely start downloading Game Pass games by just asking Alexa. In the course of a generation, we’ve gone from dedicated storefronts to apps and now smart speakers—it’s pretty impressive.

More importantly, if you own an Echo device, an Xbox, and have a Game Pass, you can just say “Alexa, download Yakuza 0 from Xbox Game Pass” aloud right now and instantly make your day better.

Eric Van Allen