Tuesday, December 4, 2007

Many Messenger improvements in Xbox 360 Fall Update

Hardcore gamers will probably know this by now, but the "Fall Dashboard Update" for the Xbox 360 will be available as a free download starting tomorrow at 2AM PST. Besides the highly anticipated DivX-support, there are a lot of changes regarding to the Xbox 360 Messenger. Here's the list:

- Added Messenger Signup into Xbox LIVE signup
- Added support for switching between Windows Live ID accounts
- Added support to allow users to change the Windows Live ID they use with their Xbox LIVE gamertag
- Added IME indicator for Messenger Conversations
- Added "Invite Friends" scene after Messenger/Windows Live ID switching dialog
- Added localization support for " has joined conversation" in Messenger
- Added messenger notification to Private Chat
- Added support for adding contacts via Windows Live ID from Xbox 360 console
- Added support for child accounts (ages 13 through 17)
- Added support for dual platform invites / text messages to PC client
- Added support for IME in Chatpad overlay
- Added support to send game invite to Messenger Contact from Xbox 360
- Display Signin option instead of Join Xbox LIVE when accessing messenger from a signed out profile
- Improved handling of transitions between messenger conversations and personal profiles
- Improved localization text for Spanish, Portuguese and Russian in Chat and IM dialogs
- Improved online status reporting with accounts that have passcodes set
- Improved performance of buddy list enumeration
- Improved performance with greater than 250 contacts
- Improved performance with Messenger and large lists
- Improved support for sending multiple friends requests from messenger contact dialog
- Improved support for signing up for Messenger on 2nd signed in profiles
- Improved sync performance between buddies and gamertag friends during login
- Improved text message for blocking Windows Live ID Child accounts
- Improved visual display of Up/Down arrows on Select Contacts scene
- No longer displaying '??' when Kanji characters are used in Messenger Display Names
- Nudges from messenger now translated into rumble notifications on controller during game/movie playback
- Remove flash of LED on controller when Chatpad keyboard is invoked
- Removed 2nd notification when connection to LIVE and signed into Messenger
- Updated icons for Messenger in Private Chat area
The one in bold is good news for those younger than 18, who can now use to the integrated Messenger client after all. There's also a new Friends of Friends feature reminiscent of the one in Windows Live Messenger.

The complete list of changes can be found here, or you can watch this video for a visual preview (skip to 6:22 for some Messenger talk).