News: Equip your 360 with background downloading, Dashboard startup and 123 other cool new features.
Microsoft has announced that the Xbox 360 Spring Update (with the much requested features background downloading and Dashboard startup) should be available in a matter of hours.
Here's the skinny of some of the major new components of this update, direct from Microsoft:
Xbox Live Marketplace Enhancements
The new background download manager gives you the ability to queue up and download six high definition items at a time, such as playable game demos, Xbox Live Arcade games, music videos, and movie trailers while actively playing games or browsing the dashboard. As an added benefit, if you engage in multiplayer gameplay while downloads are in process, the new background download manager will automatically pause the download queue until the multiplayer session is complete, ensuring a continuously optimal gameplay experience.
Updated Xbox Live Marketplace menus makes it easier for you to find and store all of your gaming and entertainment content. This includes the addition of new menus for media and entertainment content, as well as enhanced menus making it easier for you to find what's new in each section as well as a quick view at all downloads by category.
Full remote control features for Xbox Live Marketplace videos allow you to fast forward and rewind at various speeds (2X-16X) during all videos downloaded from Marketplace.
Music Player Improvements
Custom background music now continues to play without interruption during game loads and when transitioning from game to game or disc content.
During music play, the music playback screen now showcase the artist, song title, and time remaining on the song along with a visualizer showing which song on the playlist or album is currently playing.
DVD Movie Playback Upgrades
DVD movie bookmarking now allows you to pause a movie at any point, put in a game for gameplay and return to the movie at the exact point it left off.
Improved DVD movie playback for a smoother, higher quality viewing experience, including additional VGA support.
They've also provided a list of all 125 updates for your perusal.
I know I'm off to check if it's available right now.