Back at this year’s Electronic Entertainment Expo (E3), Microsoft told us that they’d be changing the Xbox One dashboard interface this year. And at their huge Xbox-fest last night in Cologne at Gamescom, they told everyone when to expect it. The answer? November 2015.

Here’s what it will look like:

xbox-one-experience-e3-2015-fullbleed

But that’s not all, backwards compatibility with 100 Xbox 360 games will roll out at the same time, giving Xbox One gamers access to Microsoft’s library of older games that can be installed and played on the Xbox One. Should you own any of them already, simply insert the disc into your Xbox One, download the updated files and you’ll be able to play without paying again.

It was also revealed that all Xbox 360 games that will be included in future Games with Gold monthly giveaways will be backwards-compatible, so you won’t even have to own an Xbox 360 to enjoy them. So essentially, if you have an Xbox One you will be getting four free games a month.

The one feature Microsoft talked about that we here in SA won’t be able to take advantage of is the ability to record free-to-air HD TV channels. They have made it possible with two additional pieces of hardware: the Hauppauge Digital TV Tuner for Xbox One in the US and the Xbox One Digital TV Tuner in Europe, so people there have been watching TV on their Xbox Ones for a while now, but an update is planned for next year sometime that will let people record TV programs using their Xbox Ones directly.

So there’s plenty going on in the Xbox camp, with lots to look forward to in the coming months, especially as Windows 10 is now out and we can start to see exactly how the OS and the Xbox One will complement one another. I’m already getting a lot of use out of the Xbox One to Windows 10 streaming functionality and look forward to seeing what other awesome things MS will deliver.

Want to see the dashboard features in more detail? Here’s Xbox’s Larry “Major Nelson” Hyrb talking about it with Xbox engineer Richard Irving.

[Source – Engadget, Xbox Wire, Images – Xbox Wire]
Deon got his first taste of PC gaming at the tender age of 11 when his father bought an 8088 XT, ostensibly to "help him with his homework". Instead, it introduced him to Leisure Suit Larry, King Graham, Sonny Bonds and many more, and Deon has been a PC gamer and hardware enthusiast ever since. He landed his first professional writing gig in 2006 at a prestigious local PC magazine, a very happy happenstance as he got to write for a living about things he loves - tech, PCs, gaming, and everything in between. He's been writing about it all ever since, and loves every minute of it.