Microsoft is planning to improve the quality of voice over Xbox 360 headsets with their next major update, which is coming this fall alongside Kinect.
The update will upgrade the audio codec used to communicate between systems, according to Xbox LIVE Studios’ Jerry Johnson, who spoke with Eurogamer at the Edinburgh Interactive Festival. He explained that the codec used when the console launched was a a low bit rate and that Microsoft “stuck” with it for a while.
Interestingly, he mentions that when Xbox LIVE launched, Microsoft said they required broadband, but they only “required a 64k connection, which not many people think of as broadband any longer. But that was the minimum requirement to run the service at the the time.” Of course, LIVE launched about eight years ago, so we had a very different idea of what a fast connection is.
If the voice clarity is as good as much of an improvement as Microsoft is hoping, it will definitely improve communication between players who enjoy online gaming. Good thing it’s coming before Gears 3.