Microsoft begins rolling out new Xbox 360 dashboard update
As of late last night, Microsoft has started rolling out the official release of the new Xbox 360 update to Xbox LIVE subscribers around the world. If you haven't yet received the update notification, no need to panic. The update is being released gradually across subscribers and regions over the course of the next week to "ensure a stable release". The initial deployment will bring the update to approximately three million consoles worldwide, with additional users being updated over the course of a couple of weeks.
Some of the big features in the new update includes the arrival of Internet Explorer for Xbox, enabling you to easily view online content right on the big screen, including HTML5 videos; a "refreshed" dashboard with and updated layout; the ability to "pin" your favorite movies, shows, games, music right to your dashboard; and the renaming of "Zune Video Marketplace" to "Xbox Video"; among other things.
According to Microsoft's Larry "Major Nelson" Hryb, Xbox SmartGlass is coming too, but not until Windows 8 launches on October 26th.
"When the Xbox SmartGlass app launches on tablets, PCs and smartphones, it will include key foundational experiences for interacting with your Xbox 360, such as dashboard and app navigation and Internet Explorer control, like text input, scrolling and pinch and zoom," he explained.
Arriving alongside the update is the all-new Xbox Music, a cloud-powered music service that contains over 30 million songs. Although users can listen to individual songs or full albums for free on their Windows 8-based tablet and PC (when it launches on October 26), Xbox Music will require an Xbox Music Pass on the Xbox 360 for $9.99 a month. Additionally, you can access Xbox Music across all Microsoft Devices with plans to bring the app to other platforms such as Android and iOS.