As expected, Microsoft has started to slowly and gradually roll out cloud storage services for all Xbox 360 users, which will help them in syncing their progress in the cloud and across multiple consoles without without having to worry about running out of offline storage.
Cloud storage will allow users to have their gamertags, and the state of their games, synced across all the Xboxes they own or happen to log into. Previously, information needed to be stored on a portable memory unit, then transferred to another console, which was both time-consuming and prone to problems.
This feature, which was first promised at the E3 conference last month, and is not yet available to all users nor all games are supported at the moment. Currently, only a limited amount of users have access to cloud syncing, and game saves are only synced to the “cloud” with Xbox LIVE Arcade games as of now. Microsoft plans to extend these features to all gamers and Xbox users later this year, along with a new version of the Xbox LIVE dashboard, which is expected to have a tiled user interface, similar to Windows Phone 7 and Windows 8.
Microsoft’s approach to slowly phase this feature in will ensure, or at least attempt to, that no major setbacks or downtime will take place. Slowly but surely, all users should be able to take advantage of this feature.
Meanwhile, Sony has had this feature available for a few months, as part of PlayStation Plus subscriptions, granting every subscriber 150 MB worth of space and store up to 1,000 game saves from any PlayStation 3 console in the universe. It’s understandable that Microsoft might want to get on board, as cloud storage becomes more prominent, and necessary, in today’s world.
Very soon, gamers will be able to kiss goodbye to portable storage and have access to all their content with their username and password. Despite the safety concerns that might pose, there’s nothing more convenient than having all your Xbox LIVE points, game saves and personal data across Xbox with an Internet connection.
Cloud Storage was only one of the advancements to the Xbox platform announced at this year’s E3. In order to appeal to lower-end customers, Microsoft announced that Live TV would be coming to the US version of Xbox Live, after countries like the UK, France and Australia had already had access for quite some time. Microsoft is clearly trying to appeal to both gamers and entertainment geeks.