Xbox owners will begin receiving a pretty substantial update today, according to a blog post from Microsoft’s Major Nelson. The updates will bring improvements to game downloads and streaming quality, while also improving Mixer functionality. Most of these improvements were announced during E3, but weren’t officially available until this update.
Perhaps the biggest inclusion in this update, is the official launch of FastStart. FastStart is a feature that enables gamers to jump into select titles before the game fully downloads. It works by identifying which files are needed to start a game, and then prioritizes those files to download first. The awesome part about FastStart, is you get to play in full fidelity, meaning you won’t notice a loss in quality or functionality while the rest of your game downloads. FastStart will only be available for select English titles at launch, but will expand to more languages and titles over time.
In addition to FastStart, Microsoft is also launching a new organizational tool, for better arrangement of your favorite games and apps. Gamers will now be able to group apps and games into specific folders, and add them to your home screen if necessary. Search on Xbox is being expanded to allow the function to be available from anywhere within your dashboard.
Mixer is also seeing its share of upgrades aimed at making gaming and streaming as seamless as possible. Microsoft added multi-touch support for touch enabled devices, and full mouse and keyboard support for PC users. The multi-touch support feature is huge because it gives users on touch based devices the ability to use multiple inputs at once. Essentially bringing them out of the press-wait-press-wait dark ages. Users of Mixer will also have the ability to broadcast in full screen mode, and will notice overall streaming quality improvements while gaming.
For full details on the release, check out the official Blog post here.