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August 21st 2012, 9:00 am PT

Open Call, More Testers Welcome for 2012 Xbox LIVE Update Public Beta!

The amount of interest we received in July for the 2012 Xbox LIVE Update Public Beta was so staggering that today we’re announcing a second open call for Xbox LIVE subscribers to test out the beta program. I can tell you that we’re accepting far more beta-testers this time around, but space is still limited and once the spots are filled the beta will be closed, so sign up today!

If you’re selected, an update will be pushed to your Xbox 360 in the next few days. The update will contain new Xbox LIVE features, including:

  • Internet Explorer for Xbox
  • Recommendations and ratings
  • Pinning and favorites
  • Enhanced category search and discovery features
  • Voice search (in specified markets)

Note: A console in the program is expected to remain fully compatible with standard retail consoles not in the program.

If you would like to participate, please register for the 2012 Xbox LIVE Update Beta here. You will be required to agree to a non-disclosure agreement (NDA) for confidentiality reasons. Any participant who violates the NDA will be removed from this beta and all Xbox betas moving forward, and will not have access to Xbox LIVE until the end of this beta program period. Our NDA enforcement squad is really good at finding violators; so save us both the trouble and don’t test them. We also ask that you fill out a brief 5-minute survey at the end of the beta to let us know what you think.

Your interest and passion in helping the Xbox team has been awesome and we’re very excited to see the early feedback so that we can make Xbox even better. Thanks again for your participation and enjoy!

Update: Several users have reported an issue with accessing the registration link for this program — keep trying – there is a high demand on the site right now due to the popularity of the program.

Update: The full registration process should now be available to everyone. If you hit an issue accessing the site please keep trying – there is a high demand on the site due to the popularity of the program.

August 21st 2012 at 9:00 am | Preview, Xbox 360, Xbox Live | 649 comments

July 26th 2012, 9:00 am PT

2012 Xbox LIVE Update Public Beta Now Available **UPDATED**

Update: The amount of interest in Xbox LIVE’s first public Beta has been incredible. The Xbox LIVE public Beta is now closed. Later this year our entire Xbox LIVE community will be able to experience all of the great features we will be bringing to your Xbox…Stay tuned!

With our work on the updated dashboard underway, we’re ready to announce an open call for all Xbox LIVE subscribers to participate in the 2012 Xbox LIVE Update Public Beta.

We need members of our valued community to help us fine-tune this early build of Xbox LIVE. What do you love? What would you like to see improved?

Numbers are limited, so sign up today. If you’re selected as a tester, an update will be pushed to your console once the public beta kicks off. The update will contain select dashboard features, including:

  • Internet Explorer for Xbox
  • Personalized dashboard recommendations
  • Enhanced category search and discovery features

Note: A console in the program is expected to remain fully compatible with standard retail consoles not in the program.

If you would like to participate, please register for the 2012 Xbox LIVE Update Public Beta here.

You will be required to agree to a non-disclosure agreement (NDA) for confidentiality reasons.

We also ask that you fill out a brief 5-minute survey at the end of the beta, to let us know what you think.

The 2012 Xbox LIVE Update Public Beta is a great opportunity to help the Xbox team by providing early feedback to make Xbox even better.

Thanks for your participation and enjoy!

Edit: Twitter appears to be down, so if be sure to add me to a circle on Google Plus for updates.
Update: Twitter is back up

July 26th 2012 at 9:00 am | Preview, Xbox 360, Xbox Live | 281 comments

November 22nd 2011, 6:00 am PT

Xbox 360 Dashboard update coming December 6th

While many of you have been involved in the Xbox LIVE Preview Program and have been busy getting an early look at the next Xbox 360 and Xbox LIVE features, I wanted to let you know that the official release for the update for all Xbox LIVE members will be Tuesday, December 6th.  In this update, free to all console owners,  you will see:

  • New personal and social features including Cloud Storage for Game Saves and LIVE Profile
  • Beacons and Facebook Sharing
  • Enhanced Family Settings
  • Integrated voice and gesture controls across the dashboard and in apps
  • Bing voice search (Available this year in the US, UK and CA)

In addition to all these great dashboard features, starting on December 6th and continuing on an ongoing basis through the holiday months, a wealth of new content will be coming to Xbox 360. New, customized applications for television, movies, internet videos, sports and music will begin rolling out from world-leading providers in more than 20 countries.

November 22nd 2011 at 6:00 am | Preview, Xbox 360, Xbox Live | 188 comments

November 16th 2011, 9:34 am PT

Reminder about the Xbox LIVE Preview Program

Are you in the Xbox LIVE Update Fall Public Preview Program and you haven’t yet completed the console registration process?  We’ve released the latest dashboard update to this select audience so if you haven’t completed all the steps to get your console added, you’re missing out.  But don’t worry, there’s still time to get going! To get started log into the Connect Portal and look for the detailed information under the announcements section: Starting 11/1 – Console Registrations. Thanks again for all of your help

http://connect.microsoft.com/xboxliveupdate

Q: Hey…I ‘d like to sign up and get the latest dashboard update ! How do I do that?
A: Sorry, the opportunity to sign up for the preview program was last month and registration is now closed.

November 16th 2011 at 9:34 am | Preview, Xbox 360, Xbox Live | 65 comments

October 12th 2011, 12:00 pm PT

Xbox LIVE Public Preview Program *UPDATED*

Update: Registration is now closed. See the note at the bottom of this post for details

At E3 we announced the new Xbox LIVE dashboard which will deliver intuitive navigation, increased responsiveness and improved engagement with Xbox experiences – all beginning this holiday. Now that our work on the dashboard is almost complete, we are announcing an open call for all Xbox LIVE members to register to participate in a preview program to help us test the system. This is an important program as we continually strive to ensure the reliability of a service that reaches tens of millions globally. We could not do so without the ongoing help of our great community. 

Once this program is kicked off, an update will be pushed to your console that will contain select dashboard features, including:

    •    New design for integrated Kinect and controller navigation
    •    New Beacons to play online with friends
    •    Deeper Facebook integration
    •    New Cloud Storage for Game Saves and Xbox LIVE Profile

Other features and entertainment partner apps may come into view during the program period.

Note: A console in the program is expected to remain fully compatible with standard retail consoles not in the program. (e.g. party chat will function)

For those familiar with previous registrations for our program, we have a new model for registering your consoles this year.  The new model is a more automated process that should make it easier for you.  We will not ask you to type in your console information upon initial registration; once you are approved to participate in the program, look for details on our portal about how to register your console.

Click here for the initial register for the Public Preview.

The latest information will be available to you via the www.connect.microsoft.com/xboxliveupdate program portal.


UPDATE
: Thank you for your interest in the Xbox LIVE Update Preview Program! Sorry, at this time we are no longer accepting registrations for the program as we have reached our target audience volume. Please be on the lookout for additional opportunities in the future to participate in Xbox LIVE Update Preview programs. For those of you that have successfully completed registration we will be reaching out to you once we are ready to take you through the next steps – within the next 2 weeks. You can check on your status my referring to your Connect Dashboard page and the icon in the upper right corner.

October 12th 2011 at 12:00 pm | Preview, Xbox 360, Xbox Live | 1,242 comments

March 29th 2011, 11:26 am PT

Xbox 360 System Update Preview -Updated

I am happy to announce that we’re doing an Xbox 360 System Update Preview program for our next release, and the opportunity to sign up is now available. We are conducting an open call for US based participants* for a public preview to help us prepare for an updated Xbox 360 disc format. This is an important update as we continually strive to improve our products and we could not do so without the help of our great Xbox community. As part of the preview program, you will receive a copy of Halo: Reach along with other possible rewards.

Much like we did last year, you’ll need to visit the Microsoft Connect site from this link and sign in with your Windows LIVE ID that is connected to your Xbox LIVE Gamertag.  Once you complete the survey that is presented to you, the Connect site will provide program related updates and you will receive a mail once the selection process is completed.

A couple of points before you head off to register:

  • We’re looking for multiple thousands of participants, so your chances of making it in are good.

  • This opportunity is open to Xbox LIVE Members in US region only*.To avoid any problems, read the survey carefully and double check all the information you provide.

  • While both Xbox LIVE Gold and Silver members can sign up, priority will be given to Gold members in the selection process.

*Due to disc distribution limitations, this beta it will be limited to residents of the United States only.

 

I’ll be sure to update this post if the program fills up.

Sign up for the Xbox LIVE Update Preview Program

 

Update: This preview will not impact voice messages or party chat.

Update: Thank you for your interest in the Xbox LIVE Update Preview Program! Sorry, at this time we are no longer accepting registrations for the program as we have reached our target audience volume. Please be on the lookout for additional opportunities in the future to participate in Xbox LIVE Update Preview programs. For those of you that have successfully completed registration we will be reaching out to you once we have completed the selection process for participation – within the next 2 weeks. You can check on your status my referring to your Connect Dashboard page and the icon in the upper right corner.
If you see Xbox LIVE Update = Pending then you have successfully registered and now you just need to wait for a follow up mail.

March 29th 2011 at 11:26 am | Preview, Xbox 360, Xbox Live | 1,189 comments

January 7th 2011, 1:09 am PT

Coming soon to the Xbox LIVE Marketplace

 

Here is a look at some of the upcoming content scheduled for the Xbox LIVE Marketplace* Please see the blog post I’ll make for each of these for pricing and/or regional availability and follow me on Twitter for updates.

 

Ring in the New Year with Activision and Electronic Arts

From January 11 through January 17, enjoy a special one-time savings of up to 50 percent on more than 25 pieces of hot Activision content including Call of Duty Map Packs, Guitar Hero Add-ons, popular Arcade titles and more! 
For details, please check your Xbox LIVE Dashboard on January 11.

 

Additionally, from January 18 through January 25, fans can enjoy a special one-time savings of up to 50 percent on more than 25 pieces of Electronic Arts content, including fun Arcade games and more! 
For details, please check your Xbox LIVE Dashboard on January 18.


From January 28 (12:00 p.m. EST / 9:00 a.m. PST) through January 31 (12:00 p.m. EST / 9:00 a.m. PST), all Xbox LIVE members will be able to try Xbox LIVE Gold for FREE!

 

Xbox LIVE Deal of the Week** :

Week of January 10 – Zombies…Back from the Dead:

Zombie Apocalypse, 400 Microsoft Points

The Dishwasher: Dead Samurai, 400 Microsoft Points

Zombie Prop Avatar, 160 Microsoft Points

Week of January 17:

Plants vs. Zombies, 800 Microsoft Points


**Special pricing available for
Xbox LIVE Gold Members

 

Xbox Games On Demand:

January 4: Crackdown 2

January 11: Need for Speed SHIFT

January 18: Transformers: The Game

January 18: Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen

January 18: Dante’s Inferno

 

Xbox LIVE Avatar Marketplace:

January 6: New Year’s Resolution

January 6: Food Fest

January 6: Burton

January 13: Dinosaur Pets

January 13: Xbox 360 Gear

 

Xbox LIVE Arcade:

January 12: Zeit2 (Ubisoft) 800 Microsoft Points

 

*Current schedule. Subject to change. All content may not be available in all Xbox LIVE regions.

 

January 7th 2011 at 1:09 am | Marketplace, Preview | 56 comments

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