The former judge of the UK series is said to be looking to increase the difficulty of the boot camp stage of the competition, reports The Sun.
Cowell is reportedly implementing the changes after dubbing last year's crop of contestants the "worst ever" on the show.
This year's hopefuls will apparently have to perfect their dancing and styling among other aspects of their act.
The contestants will also be working more closely than ever with producers to choose the best songs that suit their voice.
Cowell also reportedly is looking to see acts with more "attitude" than last year.
Nicole Scherzinger has joined the judging panel for the upcoming ninth series, with host Dermot O'Leary recently saying that she "gets" British humour.
X Factor bosses were recently said to be looking for an "army" of Frankie Cocozza-types this year.