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New Xbox Experience Hits Tonight

Photo Party included from day one.


Microsoft sent out final notice today of the impending arrival of New Xbox Experience. As with the rest of the world, the Xbox 360 rebirth will take place here in Japan later tonight.

New Xbox Experience revamps the Xbox 360's user interface with new 3D backgrounds and a web-based Marketplace. With the update in place, users can now install games to their hard disc, potentially reducing both load times and drive spin noise. Users can now communicate better with friends through the use of Live Party, where up to eight can take part in voice chat while freely moving between games without interruption.

The updated look of the Xbox 360 user interface.

Also new to the interface is an avatar system. In addition to appearing in the main interface, avatars will feature in games. The following Xbox Live Arcade titles will have full avatar support from day one: A Kingdom for Keflings, Uno, Hardwood Hearts/Hardwood Spades, and Bomberman Live. Your avatar will appear directly in these titles.

The interface will also come packaged with Photo Party, a photo sharing app for Xbox Live Party. This application was originally listed as TBA for Japan, but will now be included with the interface upgrade from the start.

Microsoft's photo sharing tool will be available in Japan from the start as well.

All Xbox 360 users will be able to make the upgrade to New Xbox Experience free of charge. For Xbox Live members, both Gold and Silver, the update will automatically occur once you attempt to sign into your account. Those who haven't signed up for Xbox Live will also be able to make the update. Microsoft will give details later.

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