Just in time for the Borderlands 2 DLC expansion, Microsoft has decided to drop a massive Xbox dashboard update so when you get home tonight, you have to download that before you can get down to the much more important business of shotgunning midgets.
Adding insult to delayed shotgun injuries, most of the new features don’t apply to us locally; one of the new features is just a pointless name change, and the only new feature anybody actually cared about – SmartGlass – is a total no-show. I’m sure everybody is appropriately stunned. But hey, there’s an internet browser now, just in case you don’t already own a perfectly good PC.
So here’s what’s holding up your plans this evening:
- Refreshed Xbox 360 Dashboard. We’ve updated the UI with a few things, including an updated layout with more tiles, a combined TV & Movies channel and, in the US, a Sports destination.
- Internet Explorer for Xbox. With Internet Explorer on Xbox, you can easily find and view internet content on the biggest screen in the house, including HTML5 videos.
- Recommendations and Ratings. Recommendations will allow you to discover new favorites, generated based on a number of variables including the content you previously viewed, what your friends are consuming and what is most relevant and popular with our Xbox community. You can now rate content yourself and also see Rotten Tomatoes ratings.
- Pinning. Pinning lets you personalize the dashboard by saving your favorite movies, TV shows, games, music, videos and websites right to the home screen. It’s as easy as opening an app or a favorite movie and clicking “pin.”
- Xbox Video. Formerly called Zune Video Marketplace, Xbox Video offers hundreds of thousands of TV shows and movies for buying or renting in instant HD streaming.
- Recent. Previously called Quick Play, the Recent view gives you a list of movies, games, apps or other types of content that you most recently accessed on the console.
- Enhanced Search. The last Xbox LIVE update brought Bing voice search to Xbox so you could use voice to search for movies, TV shows, actors, directors and artists. This year we added genre search to the list, so now you can search for action, comedy, romance, drama or sci-fi. Bing voice search now includes results for video across the Web, including YouTube.
- International Expansion of Voice Search. We’ve expanded our Kinect voice search capabilities to 9 new countries – Canada, France, Germany, Japan, Mexico, Italy, Spain, Austria, and Ireland.
The update is apparently already live in some places, but at press time had not yet turned up on my own console. I know because I just checked. And I just checked again to be double-sure. The Borderlands 2 DLC is out, though, so I’m downloading that in the meantime.