New Windows 11 controller shortcut is a simpler way to launch recent games – Jon Porter

The controller bar appears with a press of the Xbox button. | Image: Microsoft

Microsoft is testing a new feature for Windows 11 that lets you use a controller to launch recently-played games, avoiding the need to use a mouse and keyboard. The feature is called the “controller bar,” and is accessible by pressing the central Xbox button on a controller when you’re not currently in a game. It’s designed to show up to three recently-played games, alongside a selection of game launchers like Steam.

As someone whose gaming PC is permanently plugged into his TV, I can see the feature being very useful for people like me. Currently, even if I’m playing a controller-based game, I first need to use a wireless keyboard and trackpad to launch it from Windows. But in the future I might be able to skip this step, and boot up…

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