Microsoft is poised to deploy its latest Xbox 360 dashboard update on December 6th, The Verge reported recently. The update will give the dashboard an entire overhaul and will use Microsoft’s Metro-based UI, currently found in Windows Phone and Windows 8. Reportedly, the software will also include new Kinect voice controls, the ability to save games using cloud-based storage and integrated Facebook sharing. The update may include live TV support as well, but that will largely depend on where you live, The Verge said. We’re pretty big fans of the current user interface but are still excited to see any improvements that Microsoft has in store… when we take breaks from absolutely crushing our opponents in Battlefield 3, that is. More →
Sprint was nice enough to shoot us over its brand new Sprint Novatel 3G/4G MiFi, and while we saw it at CES, there’s just nothing like getting one in your hands (or paws) and taking it for a spin. We’re huge fans of Novatel Wireless, and we definitely prefer its MiFi products to USB data sticks or tethering our phones when we need mobile internet — so we’re extremely glad the company introduced a 4G WiMAX version of its popular MiFi device. Our quick impressions: it’s a tad thicker than the original MiFi, though it makes up for that by not only offering 4G speeds, but also by running a stripped down version of Linux that includes a splashy dashboard to monitor signal strength, GPS status, and network connectivity status in real-time. Additionally, we’re absolutely loving the eReader-like display on the MiFi that shows signal, GPS, and connectivity status. It’s extremely valuable and something we’re not sure how we lived without before. As for performance, we’re getting pretty decent speeds at 5Mbps down and 950Kbps up in and around New York City. We haven’t been able to judge battery life in our usage just yet, but it seems to be at least as good as the original MiFI workhouse we use all the time. Make sure to check out the rest of our photos in our gallery!
Recently, Google announced an update to its Maps application for Android. Bearing version number 5.3, the update brings new location features that target Latitude an Hotpot users. “If you’ve enabled Location History for Google Latitude, you’ve been able to visualize interesting trends in your location history with a personal dashboard at google.com/latitude on your computer,” writes Google. “Now, you can also see your dashboard on your phone by tapping View location history from your Latitude profile.” The second feature allows Maps users rating locales via Places or Hotpot to input their own, personalized aspects of their location — as opposed to Google doing it automatically. Google Maps 5.3 is in the Android Market and requires software version 1.6 or higher. More →
Without heavily banging the drums or dropping confetti, Verizon silently launched Dashboard, a Flash-based mobile storefront. The LG Chocolate 3 is the first to carry the application but we can expect to see it on plenty more phones by year’s end – resulting in the largest mobile implementation of Flash in the U.S. (get with the friggin’ program, iPhone!) Dashboard will be offering all kinds of news, entertainment, widgets, and multimedia through Verizon. So, listen up all you Flash developers, get with the program, ok?