updated 07:00 pm EDT, Mon May 9, 2011
Xbox 360 spring 2011 update leaks for May 19
Microsoft's promised Xbox 360 spring Dashboard update should be ready in less than two weeks, a support document leaked Monday has shown. The upgrade should arrive May 19 with the new disc format intact. Most changes are strictly internal, according to Joystiq's contact in tech support, but a public-facing tweak would include support for PayPal to buy points and subscriptions.
The real motivation for the update is believed to be the disc format, now known as XGD3 (Xbox Game Disc 3). Microsoft is known to have found a much lighter copy protection scheme that should get about 1GB of disc space back even as it improves the anti-piracy measures. "Future game titles" will need it, Microsoft said in a memo.
Extra space could lead to an improvement in game quality by allowing for higher resolution textures, videos, and audio samples. Role-playing games and other content-heavy titles might also ship on fewer discs.
Not all Xbox 360 owners are due to get the update at once. Microsoft would instead roll it out to some users on May 19 and push out six "groups" of updates between then and May 30. Avatar Kinect virtual persona video chats should go live almost a week after the Dashboard update on May 27.