It was little surprise that many of you had plenty to say about the PSN Store last week. Being the place you go to spend your money we had hoped you would have strong opinions about it. Here are some choice picks from all your suggestions:
- “Make it faster” was by far the most common tweak, especially regarding the curious delay when going ‘back’ to a list having started a download which leaves you unable to do anything for several seconds. ~ beeje13, TheShepanator, Kennykazey, shields_t
- “Categorised download list” or a store page that organises all your previous purchases and downloads better than the simple historical list Sony currently provide. ~ ron_mcphatty, Mason_Mk, mcwildcard
- “A wishlist” as much as a reminder for ourselves that we wanted to purchase something as for anything else. Failing that at least let us save our baskets. ~ FluBBa
- “Pre-patch older games” that are on the store so that having just purchased and downloaded a game you do not then have to sit through a patch download and install before you can play it. ~ DirtyHabit
Having looked at what might be improved on the PS3’s XMB and the PSN Store over the last couple of weeks it is an approriate time to turn our attention to an interface that combines the two; the Xbox 360’s NXE.
Microsoft re-styled the Xbox 360’s UI back in 2008 replacing the original ‘blades’ with the ‘New Xbox Experience’ (NXE). Criticised by some for seemingly being strongly influenced by the PS3’s XMB (NXE is also essentially two-dimensional navigation, but with its main axis vertical, not horizontal) the arrival of the new UI brought with it a host of new features, such as:
- Quick Launch Bar (the small, fast, text-based UI displayed by pressing the controller’s Xbox button)
- Party system
- Full game installs
It was broadly regarded as a success and welcomed by most who could find at least something in it that improved on what had gone before. If there was one common theme amongst most of the criticism it did receive it was directed at the large graphical slabs of advertising that were now very much more ‘in your face’ than the banner-type advertising in the original ‘blades’ UI had been.
Kudos has to be given the the NXE’s engineers as despite those graphical slabs which change on a regular basis, it still manages to flip through the sections without ever needing to show me a spinning ‘icon loading’ graphic for a small icon that has not changed, unlike a certain competitors console UI.
We know that some changes are coming within the next month or so but we still want to hear how you would change the NXE. Here are a couple to get you started:
- The My Xbox section should have the focus at start-up. Currently the NXE starts-up with the focus on the Spotlight section showing the latest offers on the Marketplace and new game releases.
- The My Friends section should be adjacent to My Xbox not exactly ‘opposite’ it (it is three positions either up or down in the list). Bizarrely, My Friends has been slowly moving away from My Xbox during the NXE’s evolution. They were adjacent in the beta, separated by just the Games and Video Marketplaces on release and now the additional Music Marketplace has also squeezed itself between them in the list.
Now it is your turn. How would you tweak the Xbox 360’s NXE?