November 1st 2010 9:21 am PT

Xbox 360 Dashboard update is now available

 

I am happy to announce that the latest dashboard update has now been officially released and is in process of being rolled out across the LIVE service. For many of you, the next time you sign in to Xbox LIVE, you will be prompted to receive the update. A couple of things to keep in mind over the next few hours as the update is deployed:

  • You’ll be prompted to accept the update when you sign into Xbox Live sometime in the next few hours. 
  • Regardless of what you have heard, it’s not geographically based. No one area of the world will get it before another. 
  • If you keep signing out and then back in again, this will NOT force the update…it will only anger people on your friends list who will keep getting a notification. every. time. you sign. in.
  • Be patient, everyone will eventually receive the update

Here are a few of the features that we are including in this update:

 

ESPN on Xbox LIVE*

3,500 Sporting Events A Year – Access more than 3,500 live and on-demand global sporting events from ESPN3.com a year, including college basketball, college football and college bowl games, MLB, NBA, international soccer and more.

Out of Market Games – Catch your favorite college team games. Check out the huge catalog of out of market games and enjoy them on the big screen.

The Best Ways to Watch – Enjoy HD programming, DVR controls, plus access to hundreds of clips from ESPN3.com, refreshed daily.

Games at a Glance – Keep up on real-time score information using ESPN.com’s score feed without leaving the game you’re watching. View scores for leagues and games currently in the ESPN.com feed and select “Watch Live” or “Watch Replay” to jump straight into that game.

Predict the Winner – Pick what team you think will win. While watching selected games in college football, college basketball, MLB, and NBA, you will be prompted to vote for your team of choice. You’ll also see the percentage of votes among the Xbox LIVE viewing community.

Voice Chat – Voice chat with up to seven other friends while watching the big game.

My Sports – To customize your ESPN on Xbox LIVE experience, click on the “Events, Highlights and More” slot on the homepage and browse by sport to pick a specific league that you want to follow for the season. The league that you select will now automatically display in your My Sports Channel.

Zune Music*

Zune Pass – Zune Pass is a monthly subscription service that gives you unlimited, on demand streaming of millions of songs at launch from all the major music labels and thousands of independent labels.

Enhanced search – Search the broad library to find your favorite artists, albums, songs and playlists.

Social – Connect with like-minded fans on the Zune online community and get new music recommendations. Zune Social also lets you see friend’s Avatars and listen to their recently played songs or check out their favorite artists.

Smart DJ – Instantly create customized playlists by selecting an artist and have Smart DJ find songs that complement your selection.

Netflix* Search – Experience a streamlined search function making it much easier to find the movies and TV shows you want to watch.

 

Improved voice chat quality – The audio codec is updated to improve Xbox LIVE Party audio quality. So grab your friends and jump into a multiplayer game or catch a big game with friends via ESPN3.

 

Improved Gamertag creation – Choosing a new Gamertag? If the Gamertag you’re looking for is already taken, your Avatar will spin a wheel and we will provide five other Gamertag suggestions at a time for you to choose from.


Streamlined in-dashboard virtual keyboard
– We’ve taken the existing QWERTY keyboard in-dash and made it easier to use for scenarios that involve repeated text entry, when signing up for LIVE within the dashboard for example.


Improved Xbox LIVE Marketplace UI and browse experience
– The Game Marketplace has been re-organized to provide streamlined access to the gaming and video content you want, reducing the number of steps to get to a download.


Easier to get on a wireless network
– Trying to connect to a wireless network? Now you can see a list of all the wireless networks within range when you go into network settings.  From there, you can select a new network or further configure the network you’re connected to.


Ability to sign-out other controllers in the sign-in UI
– We’re adding the ability to sign-out profiles on other controllers in the sign-in UI within the Guide. This is especially useful when playing games like Rock Band.


New browse experience for 100% completed games
– You spent a lot of time and effort earning those Achievements, so we’re giving you a new and better way to browse all of them.


Updated Family Settings
– Xbox 360 continues to lead the industry in efforts to create tools that help parents and caregivers choose the right play and viewing settings for their families. We are enhancing the core Family Settings tools for all Xbox LIVE members:


Family Programming
– When turned on, Family Programming disables display of all mature content on the dashboard and can be turned on or off with a protected password for individual members (per account). It also highlights all family-friendly entertainment.

Intelligent Default Settings – Your Xbox automatically customizes privacy and activity settings for each member, based on age (child, teen and adult). These settings can later be individually customized.

Title Exceptions – Allow your family members to play specific games above the console’s designated ESRB/PEGI (etc.) rating as you deem appropriate.

* Xbox LIVE Gold account required to access these features. Not all features available in all Xbox LIVE Regions.

 

Update: Boot to disc is currently unavailable. See this Support Article for details. This WILL return in a future update.

 

Xbox 360 By Larry Hryb, Xbox LIVE's Major Nelson

  • Muzzymate

    Why didn’t Facebook get an update? It looks really out of place now.

  • reyla

    i heard avatars are changing, but it’s not on your list dude!

  • DEATHADDER360

    Wow I’ve been trying to sign in for over an hour. It keeps starting to download an update then says it cant…

  • Shonk

    The problem is as with any large company
    its my way or the highway

    People repeatedly told Microsoft that it was to bland
    and there should be an option to change it

    People repeatedly told Microsoft that turning down the dashboard/guide effects 20db
    isnt good and there should be an option to set it back

    They have it in their heads to make a wii hd and thats what we got
    and if end users dont like it its tough

    with a bit of luck the wii will update to a less bland dashboard
    and we will get the same a few months later

  • wolfzero01

    I really hate the new color of the dashboard, its too white. it would be nice if there was an option for different colors

  • NorthMr Taylor

    Well I blame the Beta testers first. Did they not give a clear enough indication of the primary issues in the new dash?! 2 major issues that need to be resolved in the pring update. 1:Bring back new content area for quick checking on market place 2:Customisable colours for the white box areas we have now.

    Also why is there so large space between the left side of the screen and the dash elements (boxes)? Surely its more important to see the next boxes on the dash than the previous one?! Makes no sense at all.

  • D4rth T Man7iz

    Finally!

    I will be able to use party and private chat with my friends that were not in the Beta.

    :)

    PS: Is Facebook getting an update any time soon?

  • Shonk

    @NorthMr Taylor you cant teach an old dog new tricks
    they just dont listen

  • ZaZeeMan

    @NorthMr Taylor, “beta tester” insinuates that people were in a beta, where there is a chance to influence to the design. They should be called “release candidate testers because the design is pretty much finalized and testing is for bug fixes, not design changes.

  • Exu

    I’ll go ahead and ignore NorthMr Taylor’s comments just like Microsoft ignored mine when I was in the beta.

  • NorthMr Taylor

    Well said. :=) BTW anyone noticed that game updates are now slower than before. They are fail once in a while. Never did that with the old dash….

  • Jonners117

    The white boxes need to go. To be able to withstand them and make my eyes adjust to them i’ll probably have to sacrifice a couple of years of vision in later life!

  • Lloytron

    Well it took me a few attempts but eventually I got updated.

    From what I can see, we have the following
    1) Zero new features I can take adavantage of
    2) A really blocky and plain user interface
    3) A friends list that makes me feel motion sickness when I scroll through it.

    Good job!

    For the next release I would like to suggest
    1) Forced VGA resolution
    2) Mono only sound
    3) Electric shocks whenever anyone presses a button.

  • ReVmAnNL

    Partly okay, partly I mis the old layout. No depth in the items … No extra content for the Netherlands. When do we get some stuff?

  • Hostile Beauty

    Got the update at 5:10am EST this morning. Notified I was disconnected from Live, while I was playing Halo 3, in the middle of skull farming. Not real thrilled that I had to quit my game and accept the update right that minute, or risk not getting the achievement for the skull because we were offline. Had to restart the level. Required immediate updates are not cool. In the future, how about a “queue for later download” like with Windows? Playstation does it and they suck.

  • NorthernEmperor

    some avatar items don’t work, and ugly white block everywhere. aside from that not bad, but really no major changes.

  • monosocratic

    Love the new look, Major. The new dash reaction time is great, too. Thanks for everything.

  • NorthMr Taylor

    Maybe the overwhite is just for this summer at an attempt to cure people from Winter Blues. Get the new xbox 360 dashboard and no need to rush out and buy a SAD lamp. LOL

  • Coth 1888

    I really object to paying fo themes, avatar items, renting films etc, they are way over priced, So I dont really spend any time in the dashboard, but it seems okay, its looks to be geared towards a younger audience, I personally would prefer to customise the layout etc, I would hide all the stuff I have already mentioned that I won’t us, and have a changable colour scheme, but thats just me.

  • I Resendetra I

    First thought of the new dashboard – “Don’t look into the light, it will take your soul!” It would’ve been nice if we could have changed the color scheme to our liking, that way some of us don’t have to hurt our eyes when looking at the dashboard. I guess I’m either going to have to automatically start a game or keep popping aspirin from the headache I keep getting from the brightness.

    Also, I don’t like the blocky look of things and how you can shift though the things on the dashboard. It’s almost like a big blur when shifting and that’s when I said “why didn’t this come with 3D glasses?” because that’s what it reminds me of. Like MS gave us this look, but forgot to throw in the 3D glasses.

    Lastly, party chat makes everyone sound like they’re on speaker phone, a big speaker phone up against your ear. Now I get to hear how annoying some people sound.

    The only thing I like is ESPN, you can keep everything else.

  • Kivlov

    The audio codec is AWFUL, it sounds like the other person is trapped in a metal box, it is almost worth me not ever speaking to anyone on it again it is that bad, it totally didnt need changing at all. Now I have to re learn how everyone sounds because it is so different. This update is by far the worst yet. Every time I have to get used to horrible changes that I cannot edit. It took me 10 attempts to even download the update as it couldnt get a connection, and 5 tries trying to accept the terms and conditions due to it not connecting propperly. This has really upset me. Not one addition is an improvement.

  • bloodnutman

    Look I have been using it for a while now, I like the new interface & the new features are great. My only complaint is that the loading times within the dashboard are so goddam slow. I thought this would have been fixed.

  • Rokntek

    Can M$ provide a free set of sunglasses for everyone that has to endure this hideously bright dashboard update? :)

  • Black Fist

    So….this was a downgrade?!
    I was expecting an update, but, oh well, i expect everything from Microsoft.
    Why does the dashboard freezes for 10 seconds when i come out of the Game Library?
    And why is everything so freaking slow?
    The game marketplace is totally sluggish.
    When it starts to download, it works fine (i download a trial), but it takes “ages” to get there.
    When i enter the Games Marketplace, be it demos or arcade, it takes at least 20 seconds for the frames to appear, only then, and after a few seconds more, the covers of the games start to appear…and when i press any game…more 20 seconds or more to anything to happen
    And that problem started last saturday…so, what gives?

  • NeoVampyre

    Sorry Major, I know you are only listening to your Market Research employees but they need to listen to you when you tell them “You’re Fired for incompetence!” Basically every one who uses a computer knows that clincal white screen = annoying eye pain. The marketplace streamlining is as streamline as a hippos *rse, anyonewho has an xbox for over 6 months has probibly view all the marketplace content already and is only interested in the new releases and wants that option quick and easy to access. As for the new sounds, I got an achvmt and barely registered the dampened sound! I want a fanfare to let me know whilst concentrating on playing. Can we please have the blade customization option back from the version1 dashboard? (and the beginning walkthough probibly insulted every who has owned an Xbox from more than 1 day!)

    Heres an idea from your guys to work on for the next update – How about instead of the faded screen when the console is left for more than 10 minutes, get to to zoom in on your avatar whilst he dances round the screen?

  • wolfzero01

    after using the new dashboard, it really sucks. why is it that if I want to watch ESPN, listen to Lastfm, or check out anything I have to download a frickin update for it. Then when trying to download the update for the app, I get an error message that says I can’t connect to Live, never mind the fact that I was signed in to begin with & when it kicks me out, I’m still signed in. perhaps more testing needed to be involved before releasing it.

  • P00K

    So why does Netflix still require gold when it’s free to all on PS3 and Wii with the same featureset?

  • SeeUInTheFuture

    Update sucks ass, its hideous. Also live is running like shit tonight, ruining my one night of play I get this week. Cant download the RB2 exports because of this. Thanks MSoft =|

  • ExaltedVanguard

    How did this audio codec make it through a quality check?! It sounds absolutely HORRIBLE. Everyone sounds like they’re in tin cans. That alone makes this update 1/5 stars.

  • Zuree

    OMG, I am nervous. My awesome little Purple Dragon I got from Destination: Arcade is missing!!!!! Time to start making some “Lost Avatar Pet” posters and post them around town.

    Today I am a sad man :( I hope he comes back…

    :: This poor attempt at humor translates to: I am having issues with my Avatar clothing and props and I hope it gets fixed soon ::

  • Casserole

    Paid for avatar clothes don’t import, they just leave a ?.

  • SonyPS3Sucks

    I was part of the Beta process. Everything seem to be going great. Well until the actual update… Few problems I experience so-far is:

    1. Avatar props/awards paid or won not working just a explanation mark.
    2. Downloading a 360 Demo (Need4Speed HP), after it’s done 100% Downloading it says “Can’t Download” which the file is corrupted in my memory.
    3. Lag on Dashboard (pictures loading, exiting a application ie.ESPN) when connected to LIVE.

  • Sausage Villan

    Yeah give us a nod when i can go back to avatars and use the avatars i paid ALOT of money for … i was gonna change my avatar from a halloween themed one to another theme too bad i waited for the day you guys broke the avatars …. so please can we get a quick fix on this before my eyes go blind from the horrible white blocks
    and the only thing that i can even use is netflix search which is awesome … too bad you made netflix the same blocky crappyness as everything else
    and can we get time warner cable on board with espn cause right now espn is just a tease that really p1sses me off i mean all i get is freakin sports center highlights i don’t need xbox to watch sports center i can do that all on my own with out the wear and tear on my xbox

  • Skip Freethrow

    I haven’t been a big fan of this new dashboard since the update. I have fallen in love with the previous dashboard. Is there a way to restore the previous dashboard since the update?

  • BMF Irish ace

    yea same shit USA only what is the point in this i can get espn in ireland on sky but not on xbox live and i pay for xbox live to would u believe here so why is xbox live going up all over the world when its just USA who gets the best updates

  • TIPCEE

    I love the new look, it fits a wider audience. You guys hit the nail on the head, my family feels more connected with this look. From my 3 year old all the way up to the 28 year old (me) thanks for not spoiling the gamer freaks! Now when a guest comes over it will look more like a home not a gamer club. It will look more like a living room, not a star trek nerds cool gizmo, it can match most styles even spocks ears. By using a white guide background, you brought more light into our space, now we can have the lights on more often and still see what we’re looking at. This also helps when we use kenect. Honestly your going to get more people complaining in here because the rest of us, grateful people, are enjoying the new look! I’m not saying you guys aren’t money driven, hungry, people, which is totally fine for people who want to score more then just gamer points. But what I’m really trying yo say is keep it up, you guys did a wonderful job!

  • XXIPWNZUXX

    Loving the new audio codec, sounds great on my Turtle Beach X11. Props to all of the Xbox team for their hard work. :)

  • Lord Of Blah

    “Improved voice chat quality”? WHAT? I sound like a robot now!

  • LordBBH

    No increase to the 100 friends list limit, but now I get to have my eyes burnt out on bright white boxes everywhere. Cool!!

  • AN1MAL75

    LMAO good work m$ loving the new dashboard.sarcasm

  • KEV2O9

    No ESPN for the UK??

    When are you going to give people outside of the US a decent service too with services like iplayer (which is avialalbe for free on wii and PS3), 4onDemand, Lovefilms etc??

    After all the hype this update is just a major fail. Sad times. :(

  • Aliasalpha

    For the most part I like it, it feels cleaner and faster to navigate, not tried the voice chat yet (thats the problem with not having friends) but as long as it doesn’t drop out I don’t mind if people sound a tad robotty.

    I do, however, have 2 issues:

    1) The white. The other posters here are correct about it being too bright and inducing eyestrain. Even if its in the form of a standard theme, the option for light, medium & dark would be most welcome.

    2) The new onscreen keyboard: This is awesome in all but one respect, the noise it makes when moving the cursor to another letter. As someone who uses the messaging regularly and as someone who is annoyed by repetitive plinky noises, this sound really gets on my goat and my goat does not enjoy it. I found it so frustrating that I had to turn off dashboard sounds and now I don’t get the addictive achievement noise!

  • AccidentReport

    OK. I’m not normally one to actually get out and complain about the updates. There are always good and bad points but why…OH WHY…have microsoft made everything BRIGHT WHITE. Seriously? I can’t look at the screen without going blind. I hit the guide button and my retinas are burnt out of the back of my head!

    Please please please release an update to either make the guide grey again or at least give people a choice!!!

  • NorthMr Taylor

    Bright eyes
    Burning like fire
    Bright eyes
    How can you close and fail?
    How can the light that burned so brightly
    Suddenly burn so pale?
    Bright eyes

    Think my skin has got browner since using the new dash. No need for expensive holidays next year. Xbox360 fall update will give me all the vitamin D and radiation I need. Thanks MS. :0

  • AARON82

    anyone else’s xbox feel like its gonna RROD when backing out of the game options when a game is in the disc tray ?? where you install it to hdd..
    with every update xbox gets my ps3 gets more tempting.

  • Jeff the Joker

    I would like to throw my hat in on the ‘Bright White Box’ problem

    I personally just don’t like it.

    but more importantly to me, my girl friend has mild dyslexia and reading text in a high contrast situation (Black on White for example) is very difficult and frustrating for her.

    Could we try either for a) Hue and Saturation Sliders for our backgrounds
    or at the very least b) A Choice of a couple of colours White/ Grey / whatever

    Microsoft and its 3rd party developers have started to get the knack of supporting users with colour blindness, please now don’t become a headache for Dyslexics (Pun kinda intended)

  • Exu

    YOU’RE ALL BETA TESTERS NOW! HA!

  • NorthMr Taylor

    @Jeff the Joker

    Thats a very valid point. White can saturate black quite easy so I guess people suffering from poor eye sight or dyslexia could have issues with those “super white boxes”

  • MetalG

    I have to agree with a lot of posts here. The new dash update seems like a step backwards. The voice quality in chat has got worse with everyone sounding like they have a cold. The white background when the guide button is pressed is very hard to look at. Also scrolling through the friends list fast with them poping in and out made me feel like i had motion sickness.

  • uzivatel

    Few more things about the new Marketplace:
    * place “Deal of the Week” in the “Featured” section
    * move “Avatar Games” to “Specialty Shops” section next to the “Avatar Marketplace”
    * move “Xbox LIVE Indie Games” to “Games & Demos” – the current placement seems almost insulting to all the great people trying to create fun games for us to play

 
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