Xbox 360 fall 2012 dashboard update rolls out today

Microsoft announced plans to launch a major new dashboard update to the Xbox 360 console earlier this year and today that update will begin to be distributed to its owners. That update will include the previously announced addition of the Internet Explorer web browser for the Xbox 360. Both the Playstation 3 and the Wii have always had a web browser, but this is the first time that Microsoft's console will be able to surf the Internet.

The Major Nelson website has the details of what else will be included in this fall 2012 dashboard update. It will include the new Xbox Music and Xbox Video services (replacing Zune Music and Zune Video) along with allowing users to recommend and rate content.  Users will also be able to pin their favorite games, videos, music and more to their Xbox 360 home screen in a way that's similar to the Start screen for Windows 8.

Xbox SmartGlass will be launched at the same time as Windows 8 on October 26th, which will let some Xbox 360 games link to apps for Windows 8, iOS and Android. Microsoft states, "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."

Source: Major Nelson | Image via Microsoft

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thing thats worrying for me is that games (the reason to own an xbox) are being pushed more and more out the way for adverts and other content such as youtube. Looking at the screen shot above the game currently inserted into the xbox is Fifa yet it gets a small square in the top right, the fifa game should be where the halo advert is.

I know you can set the Xbox to automatically start games when they are inserted, i love playing on the xbox and remember the blades, it just seems that each release they are getting further and further away from games.

I'm not sure why I would need the item I have inserted in the Xbox to take up most of the home screen. I don't play it on the home screen, it's just an icon.

Good: Faster launching all around, voice searching from Home screen will bring up searches on Internet Explorer. IE is fast and good for simple browsing not necessarily good for video consumption etc. XBOX music is phenomenally easy to navigate and create playlists, this was easily the best job MS has done on anything Xbox lately for me, and it launches in 6 seconds. Nice job overall, but it doesn't match up to the grand series of fall releases that are coming. Unless they have something up their sleeves on release day which I doubt.

Bad: I should be able to pin stuff to my home screen like I do on my computer. Only pins end up in the Pinned section. And the worst part about pins is they are rectangular and tall instead of little squares, so they take up WAY too much space. Instead of seeing 12 pins as squares, I can see 5 tall rectangles. Just stupid. Same in the Music section, when I want to see Artist picks I can see 12 squares full of Artists, but when I look at Album picks, I can only see 5 tall rectangles, just stupid. And easily the biggest disappointment of all is that 3 years after Kinect is introduced and the promise of incredible video conferencing from the couch is made possible using Video Kinect, there is still no Skype integration. Looks like we have to wait for the next XBOX console for that.

Nice job overall, but some missed opportunities.

The new dash is horrible, daily deals etc is now gone (at least it was in the beta) game reviews etc from the likes of IGN and Gamespot as well as other content from the likes of Official xbox magazine etc etc. The 'icon' bug is back when using the media player, where the icons for the trailer etc is highly pixellated or non-existent. I have been pushiong all of this in the forums for months with the posts either being deleted or ignored

On top of that it takes more 'clicks' to get to stuff now than it ever did. The A button is going to wear out sooner rather than later

BeLGaRaTh said,
The new dash is horrible, daily deals etc is now gone (at least it was in the beta) game reviews etc from the likes of IGN and Gamespot as well as other content from the likes of Official xbox magazine etc etc. The 'icon' bug is back when using the media player, where the icons for the trailer etc is highly pixellated or non-existent. I have been pushiong all of this in the forums for months with the posts either being deleted or ignored

On top of that it takes more 'clicks' to get to stuff now than it ever did. The A button is going to wear out sooner rather than later

There is a new app for that. You'll come accross it when clicking on the "Sales & Specials" tile under "Browse Games". Once you install the app, you'll have even more specials than before. "Everyday Value" is among them.

The new dashboard is pretty good Kinect integration is heaps better too which is a plus (if you happen to have Kinect). The only downside is IE being Gold only but makes sense when you think about it, all the online functionality is paid for anyway so goes in line with that (although I still feel it should of been free feature).

"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."

Interesting, I'll just hope the case is that you need the Xbox update for the text input then? The SmartGlass app for Windows 8 can actually connect to an Xbox already but text input didn't seem to be possible even in controller mode (which BTW is useless unless you're on a touchscreen moving mouse between on-screen buttons is kind of tedious).

Leonick said,

Interesting, I'll just hope the case is that you need the Xbox update for the text input then? The SmartGlass app for Windows 8 can actually connect to an Xbox already but text input didn't seem to be possible even in controller mode (which BTW is useless unless you're on a touchscreen moving mouse between on-screen buttons is kind of tedious).

I agree, I'd love trackpad control of the dashboard (on my laptop) and touch control (from my future surface )

One of the best features of the new Dashboard is an extension of the last years update and App integration support.

So when you are looking for a Movie to watch, you can look up the Movie via Bing and all installed Apps also report their contents. So when you find the Movie, it will show which Apps/providers offer it.

This is brilliant when you are looking for a Movie and can don't have to dig through the Apps looking for it, as you can instantly see if you can watch it on Hulu, Netflix, etc or Rent or Buy it online through XBox Video or other services that also offer it for purchase/rent.


It is like having IMDB with links to where you can watch it without having to flip through several sites or Apps to find it.

The SmartGlass is currently just an advanced version of XBox Companion, but offers a lot of nice features that have started to come online.

Also DLNA and PlaysTo works well and no longer needs Media Center running to be a Client.

Bryer said,
Welcome to a buggy experience people!!!

What makes you say that? I've been testing the BETA and haven't had a single issue?

AdamLC said,

What makes you say that? I've been testing the BETA and haven't had a single issue?

Shush, don't bring common sense into this. Bryer had issues, so everybody else will too. /s

TCLN Ryster said,

Shush, don't bring common sense into this. Bryer had issues, so everybody else will too. /s

LOL,
Issues, probably but not with the BETA.

Bryer said,
Welcome to a buggy experience people!!!

Only thing that bugs me on the latest build are that people are still crying over QUERTY being the only english keyboard layout.

I wish there was a way to create a customised home page where I could have all the apps I frequently use (like Netflix, iPlayer etc) just sitting there and not have to go into recents.

Wasn't in the beta but looks like the pinned section is a clunky way of doing what I'm looking for.

ACTIONpack said,
Will it update my beta version of Xbox dashboard?

Yep! And will remove the beta tab etc. there aren't many other things added from the most recent build. You can check the change log on the xbox.com website!

ingramator said,

Yep! And will remove the beta tab etc. there aren't many other things added from the most recent build. You can check the change log on the xbox.com website!

I'm pretty sure it is actually just the most recent build from the preview program (from about 4-5 days ago), so if you're in the preview program you won't even get an update, the BETA tab will just dissapear.

ACTIONpack said,
Will it update my beta version of Xbox dashboard?

In last years programme, the tab for Beta stayed until there was a minor update for all consoles.

Aergan said,

In last years programme, the tab for Beta stayed until there was a minor update for all consoles.

Yeah, that's what I was going to say too. But fired up the Xbox this morning and Beta page is in fact gone.

Ref.:
"Users will also be able to pin their favorite games, videos, music and more to their Xbox 360 home screen in a way that's similar to the Start screen for Windows 8"

Not even close!
I had this feature since I opted in on the BETA. You get a tile (2nd from the top on the home screen) under which you can find all your "pins". Basically, it looks like the "Recent Items" list and is nothing to write home about!

IE on the other hand is a nice addition. Unfortunately, your bookmarked websites will also show under your pinned items, so, it can be quite of a mess and sort of festroys the purpose of the pinned content.

Haven't played with XBOX Music / XBOX Video. I am happy with Netflix, iHeart and Last.FM.

Tumultus said,
Ref.:
...
Haven't played with XBOX Music / XBOX Video. I am happy with Netflix, iHeart and Last.FM.

To me I have not noticed the difference other than the apps are larger and use silver instead of magenta/crimson as the BG colour.

joep1984 said,
Is IE a Gold-only feature? Wouldn't put it past Microsoft...

IE is useless on xbox, no flash or java support.

d4rk5ky said,

IE is useless on xbox, no flash or java support.


it has its own java engine, and no flash = so what, its for general web browsing after all.

joep1984 said,
Is IE a Gold-only feature? Wouldn't put it past Microsoft...

Yeah it's pretty funny how low MS will go to make money, but as they said IE's not really a great feature for xbox just an 'added extra' if you already happen to have gold.

d4rk5ky said,

IE is useless on xbox, no flash or java support.

Java, are you serious? What freaking modern OS supports Browser based Java content inherently?

As for Flash, there is Flash Video support and HTML5 video support, so Youtube and other sites work just fine, which reduces the need for Flash considerably.

n_K said,

Yeah it's pretty funny how low MS will go to make money, but as they said IE's not really a great feature for xbox just an 'added extra' if you already happen to have gold.

People using only an XBox for their home Media and want to look up something or find a Video on the Web and share it with the family it works fine.

joep1984 said,
Is IE a Gold-only feature? Wouldn't put it past Microsoft...

A gold sub is peanuts, also a family pack is very good value (We get a pack yearly, it costs £70 for the 4 of us = 70/4/12 = £1.40 a month).

Or as I like to say, its not even a pint of larger a month!

duddit2 said,

A gold sub is peanuts, also a family pack is very good value (We get a pack yearly, it costs £70 for the 4 of us = 70/4/12 = £1.40 a month).

Or as I like to say, its not even a pint of larger a month!

The problem isn't the cost itself. It's that microsoft wants you to pay to be able to have basic functionality such as this and other things. Basic functionality that sony and even nintendo don't charge you for.

'Basic' functionality, that wasn't there for the first 7 years of the machine's life? I get that it's not advanced stuff, but it's hardly basic stuff *for a console*.

Kirkburn said,
'Basic' functionality, that wasn't there for the first 7 years of the machine's life? I get that it's not advanced stuff, but it's hardly basic stuff *for a console*.

Exactly. I see absolutely nothing wrong with this being a Gold Only feature. I don't understand this mentality anymore that everything should just be free...

Kirkburn said,
'Basic' functionality, that wasn't there for the first 7 years of the machine's life? I get that it's not advanced stuff, but it's hardly basic stuff *for a console*.

It doesn't matter that the feature wasn't there at launch. PC's didn't have the ability to browse the web when they were first created either, but they didn't require you have to have another subscription on top of your monthly isp bill in order to do it. And this aint the only thing MS is guilty of charging you for when they shouldn't.

M_Lyons10 said,

Exactly. I see absolutely nothing wrong with this being a Gold Only feature. I don't understand this mentality anymore that everything should just be free...

Likewise, i can't understand the mentality that some people are getting nowadays that everything should now have an annual subscription fee tacked on to it.

Blackhearted said,
PC's didn't have the ability to browse the web when they were first created either
Because the web didn't exist.

Blackhearted said,
but they didn't require you have to have another subscription on top of your monthly isp bill in order to do it.
Not exactly true. Early web browsers often came with the ISPs themselves (e.g. AOL). While there were 'free' browsers, they were pretty rudimentary.

I don't think anyone is suggesting that everything should be paid for, just that not everything *must* be free - especially if it was developed many years after the original hardware launch.

Shaun said,

Yea, Shout at the Xbox and it will do an update there and then.


Please get on sensor appliance and user interface teams with Microsoft and other electronics device makers asap.

People would love the simplicity of user controls you would introduce.

Siri on acid LOL

Glassed Silver:ios

Shaun said,

Yea, Shout at the Xbox and it will do an update there and then.

It didn't work, do I need to be a certain distance?

/s

duddit2 said,

It didn't work, do I need to be a certain distance?

/s

Make sure you address the console or it wont know you are talking to it, for example;

"Xbox (said in a nice soft tone), UPDATE NOW! (shouted quite loudly)"

Edited by Shaun N., Oct 16 2012, 11:24am :

Shaun said,

Make sure you address the console or it wont know you are talking to it, for example;

"Xbox (said in a nice soft tone), UPDATE NOW! (shouted quite loudly)"

The only thing that happens is everyone in the room looks at me funny, am I doing something wrong?

/s

duddit2 said,

The only thing that happens is everyone in the room looks at me funny, am I doing something wrong?

/s

No this is perfect, Now get one of those people looking at you to record you doing it an upload so I can try and find out what the issue is.

Jarrichvdv said,

It will roll out today, they didn't say that it's already available.

I was only stating its not available yet. not that I expected it to be. Most likely US time as well.