XBOX Dashboard update, going metro like windows phone 7 and the upcoming windows 8. Once you get passed the agreements, you can almost use kinect for the interface, maybe you could do that before? i don’t know, i mean who uses a Kinect on xbox anyway?
In all seriousness though the voice control of kinect isn’t too bad considering, except when trying to play a video, “rewind” fine, “faster” fine, but “play”, “PLAY” is a freaking nightmare. At least that’s been my experience so far, think i’ll be keeping that controller handy for the more advanced controls.
Love Film was also included in the update (XBL GOLD members only), as a first time subscriber to the service i started off with some “Happy Feet” streaming, which was the perfect movie after watching BBC’s Frozen Planet over the last month. Unfortunately i lost xbox live connectivity twice during the movie which was frustrating, both times were whilst rewinding the video and yelling at the xbox, maybe i hurt its feeling hehe. I’m unsure if this is a LoveFilm service problem or XBL, as Ben has had similar trouble streaming from zune in the past. The good news is i was able to resume where i left off in the video, though i had to do a search for the movie to start playing it, there was no quick easy access of previous or recently viewed which is a bit of a let down. The video quality is SD sadly, but it was adequate enough, but i’ve also put Captain America and Thor on my blu-ray request list. There was a deal coming from the amazon site of a £15 amazon gift card and a month free trial of lovefilm for new customers which is great, had to sign up with a credit card though, but its ok to cancel before the months up so long as any rentals are returned.
Other new features of the update are inclusion of cloud storage for save games, something that will benefit those who visit their friends a lot and who don’t keep their saves on a usb drive.
The apps section is pretty slim, with LoveFilm and Zune as the only ones currently listed on the marketplace, though sky and last.fm are still available on xbox anyway.
The real kicka though is how far down indie games are now buried, you have to go to the main “Games” header, then game marketplace then another “Games” header, then select “Game Type” which will give you “arcade”, “games on demand”, “indie games” and XBOX originals.
So i’m not too disappointed with the new update, it has though caused me to either waste time watching stuff on LoveFilm and renting movies, or waste money on not having the time to do those things. I definitely wouldn’t of bothered with the service if it wasn’t on xbox. But as someone who generally fears change, i don’t mind this update at all.