Microsoft outlines changes and improvements coming in dashboard update

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Microsoft outlines changes and improvements coming in dashboard update
A few of the upcoming Xbox 360 Dashboard update's biggest changes have been heavily touted by Microsoft over the past few months: Things like a redesigned Zune Marketplace, ESPN streaming video and the power to control things with your mind gestures. However, a few of the update's lesser known functions were recently explained by Microsoft -- for instance, did you know that the update will improve voice chat quality, a more streamlined approach to connecting to wireless hotspots, and also, sometimes, your 360's disc tray will produce sizzling strips of hickory-smoked bacon?

To find out which one of those things we said was a bold-faced lie, check out the full list of changes coming in the next Dashboard update after the jump.
  • Improved voice quality -- the audio codec is being updated to improve Xbox LIVE Party chat audio quality. So grab your friends and jump into a multiplayer game, catch a big sports event, watch a movie or do all three.
  • Improved experience for changing your Gamertag -- choosing a new Gamertag? If the Gamertag you're looking for is already taken, your Avatar will spin a wheel and we will provide five other Gamertag suggestions at a time for you to choose from.
  • Streamlined in-dashboard virtual keyboard -- we've taken the existing QWERTY keyboard in-dash and made it easier to use for scenarios that involve repeated text entry, for example when signing up for LIVE within the dashboard.
  • Improved Xbox LIVE Marketplace UI and browse experience -- the Games Marketplace has been re-organized to provide streamlined access to the games and content you want, reducing the number of steps it takes to get to a download.
  • Avatar changes -- we've made your Avatars slightly more proportional so you can better play Kinect games
  • Easier to get on a wireless network -- trying to connect to a wireless network? With the next update, you'll see a list of all the wireless networks within range when you go into network settings. From there, you'll be able to select a new network or further configure the network you're connected to.
  • Ability to sign-out other controllers in the sign-in UI -- we're adding the ability to sign-out profiles on other controllers in the sign-in UI within the Guide. This is especially useful when playing games like Rock Band.
  • New browse experience for 100% completed games -- you spent a lot of time and effort earning those Achievements, so instead of only being able to view your first dozen completed games, we're giving you a new and better way to browse all of them.
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