Playstation 3 Firmware 3.0 feature updates

Playstation 3  Firmware 3.0 feature updates

Originally unveiled at gamescom last month, today Sony officially releases firmware upgrade 3.0 for the Playstation 3.  The upgrade intends to enhance the XMB by providing a better ease of access to popular features and create a more animated appeal.

“What’s New” – The “What’s New” feature has replaced the “Information Board” option.  Access “What’s New” to read news and information, or stream media content about popular games and hardware.  Choosing a news topic, such as a popular game, will generally launch the PS3 web browser and direct you to the product’s official site.  You will also notice your most recently played games displayed in this section.  “What’s New” can be used as a quick launch for these games, as well as the Playstation Store.

Playstation Store Shortcuts– The Playstation Store icon has been relocated under the “Games” tab from the main XMB.  Upon selecting the Playstation Store icon you will be able to choose from two sub-categories, “Video” and “Games”.  Before entering either category window will pop up with a layout similar to the “What’s New” feature.  Here you can view shortcuts to download the most recent and most popular games or movies, depending on which section of the Playstation Store you are trying to enter.

XMB look and feel – Several adjustments have been made to improve the aesthetics of the XMB.  The original theme has been animated with background movement, but you may revert back to the classic look if preferred.  The status indicator in the upper-right corner of the XMB, along with the usual news ticker, now displays your user avatar, number of friends online and the number of unread messages you have.  The “Friends” list has also been altered to make a larger display of your friends’ usernames and avatars.

Trophies – You will still be allowed to track your progress by game, as trophy lists will still be categorized by each title.  However, sub-categories can now be created for the original game and the game’s add-on content to better organize your accomplishments.

Personalization – Dynamic themes can now be developed and will be available, likely for purchase, in the Playstation Store.  Dynamic Themes allow characters and environments in the background to move and change, some of which will reflect the time of day.  Also available through the Playstation Store will be a larger variety of avatars.  There will be free and premium avatars available for download.

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