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#1 Ironman273

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Posted 09 January 2014 - 15:25

Xbox One's first big update will address 'the Live experience,' expect streaming before E3
BY BEN GILBERT  JANUARY 8TH, 2014
 

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Xbox -- and Microsoft in general -- doesn't really show up for CES. It's not hard to understand why: for a big company like Microsoft, there's no point in competing with the cacophony of voices shouting for attention. "Whenever we want, we can talk about Xbox stuff and get coverage. Why try to talk with 100,000 other things going on?" Xbox chief product officer Marc Whitten told us in an interview this week. Though Xbox isn't here to show anything off, Whitten's in town to meet with partners and, as he put it, "It's just a good time to pop up and see an environmental scan you can get in an immediate dose." After a long 2013 head down on the Xbox One launch, he's finally got a second to take the temperature and see the world outside of Microsoft's Bellevue, Wash. campus.

 

But we're not here to ask Whitten about the past. Yes, he's "really thrilled" with the console's launch (over 3 million sold by the end of 2013). And yes, he's very happy with the reaction from consumers. That doesn't mean work's over, of course. "There are seams in the product [XB1]. There are still seams in the 360, nothing's ever done," Whitten said. As such, first up on the fix docket is what Whitten called, "the Live experience." Essentially, that's much of the social features on the latest Xbox console. Whitten takes that stuff personally, having worked on Xbox Live as a service for the last 10 years:

 

"The feedback we've gotten is pretty valid; some of the social stuff is hidden or harder to use than it was on the Xbox 360. So you're gonna see us come out with an update where, well, we're going to fix those things. As a person who's been pretty involved in building Xbox Live for the last decade, I take it pretty seriously when people say it's harder to get into a party, and the defaults aren't right, and I don't like the model. So what I'm trying to do with the team is kind of theme some stuff up. Let's take an update and really go through a big list of what we're hearing from customers, what we know is broken with the architecture, areas that we want to improve or complete. I think that's a theme you'll really see us push on -- that Live experience."

Based on our conversation with Whitten, it sounds like those Live fixes are coming sooner than later. Promised game streaming functionality, however, may not be coming as quickly. "This is not 100 percent," Whitten prefaced his statement with. "But my general strategy at E3 is to talk about things that are gonna happen from that E3 to the next E3. So, we are not yet to the next E3," he added with a smile. So, uh, before June then!

 

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Updates in general, though, will come much faster. While Whitten said we'll still see the traditional large Dashboard updates, the Xbox One was designed around lessons learned from the 360 before it. One major facet of that design facilitates more regular updates. "The Xbox 360, which I'm still very very proud of, the software architecture was built in 2003. Rethinking [updates] based on everything we learned from 360 was a lot of what went into the Xbox One," he told us. "You're still gonna see the big, 'Hey, here's the cool stuff we're doing.' But you're also gonna see the box just get better faster than you did in the past."

 

First up on that front? "Everything from getting more apps out faster, some of the TV stuff -- improving some of that, getting the scale of that internationally where we don't have some of that. So I think you're gonna see that come pretty quickly," Whitten said.

 

The next big push for Microsoft's Xbox One starts by March's Game Developers Conference. As it turns out, the Xbox One gets its first major exclusive game that month in Titanfall as well. And hey, if you ask us, there's serious incentive for Microsoft to have partying up perfected in time for Respawn Entertainment's big game.

 

Source: Engadget




#2 Andrew

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Posted 09 January 2014 - 15:37

I really hope building it modular won't mean that it can never behave like the 360 dash. I really miss the simplicity of the guide.

 

Oh and they need to bring back the advanced options for avatars. #1 thing that ****** me off about the X1 :laugh:



#3 trooper11

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Posted 09 January 2014 - 15:43

This is great to hear.

I'm looking forward to see MS be aggressive about updates to fix issues and add features.

At least they are talking the talk. It doesn't sound like they are trying to avoid the issues raised by users.

I'm interested in seeing how their twitch streaming feature turns out.

#4 trooper11

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Posted 09 January 2014 - 15:46

I really hope building it modular won't mean that it can never behave like the 360 dash. I really miss the simplicity of the guide.
 
Oh and they need to bring back the advanced options for avatars. #1 thing that ****** me off about the X1 :laugh:


Well that's a very old issue regarding modular vs integrated. Almost every platform today wrestles with reaching that 'perfect' balance. Being modular means more frequent updates, but being integrated means a simpler experience.

MS happens to be experienced in both styles, and they are currently migrating their platforms to a more modular style.

#5 dipsylalapo

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Posted 09 January 2014 - 15:51

I really hope building it modular won't mean that it can never behave like the 360 dash. I really miss the simplicity of the guide.

 

Oh and they need to bring back the advanced options for avatars. #1 thing that ****** me off about the X1 :laugh:

Me to, I've been playing both the 360 and the Xbox One and hate having to start a new app to check the last achievement or check the status of a download. They need to bring back a simpler way to check all that. I know I'm not the only one who dislikes this.

 

Hope they bring back something similar to that in the near future.



#6 George P

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Posted 09 January 2014 - 21:30

Didn't the rumors say that a big Xbox One software update would come with Windows 8.1 update 1 and Windows Phone 8.1?   I was always expecting this to happen and that fall would be the timetable for it.  If they're saying before E3 for sure then that;s a good sign for the other updates coming around the same time as well.  Looks like BUILD 2014 in April is going to be another big show.



#7 BajiRav

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Posted 14 January 2014 - 03:28

wonder if MS releases another update tomorrow? (January patch Tuesday :) )

#8 magik

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Posted 14 January 2014 - 15:39

What's a good place to check on recent updates/releases? I have auto-updates on but would like to know what came down the pipe...



#9 George P

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Posted 14 January 2014 - 16:32

There's a support site some where on Xbox.com for the XB1 that lists the different OS builds out so far.  There have been three but so far no news of a update coming this month, if the Major doesn't tweet something about one then I don't think we're getting one today.



#10 Showan

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Posted 14 January 2014 - 22:34

Netflix, Amazon, NFL, etc; have to feel more integrated and not separate from the overall experience.  Netflix and Amazon Instant Video, NFL, and such, should have a more heavy integration in the overall experience.  Not feel tact'd on.

 

Xbox Live should feel like 'Regular TV, with video game integration'...  Yes I know it's about video games first.  It has to feel like tv (minus commercials) and there happens to be a channel that lets you play video games.

If they think about it this way, things should work out for the better...