Update, Sept. 24: The updated, extra-fast Microsoft Store is now available for all Xbox One owners outside of China.
Microsoft started rolling out the revised digital store interface to members of the Xbox Insider program in August. It changes the look of the store with the aim of making it easier to navigate for newcomers to the platform, and is also meant to make the store perform more than twice as fast as it did before. This is the same store interface that will appear on the more powerful Xbox Series X and Xbox Series S platforms, so we can look forward to some super-fast storefront action in the next generation.
According to a post on the official Xbox Wire blog, the new Microsoft Store will start rolling out to the Chinese market later this month.
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The Microsoft Store interface on Xbox consoles is getting a big update ahead of the holiday release of the Xbox Series X.
The updated version of the store will become available to some Xbox Insider members this week on August 5. Everyone won't be able to get in at once, but Microsoft says more Insiders will be added in over time. The update will go live for all users this fall, just in time for the Series X.
"One of the things that's important to us when we think about an easier to use store is a store that's more inclusive for folks that might be new to our experience, might be new to the Xbox family, especially with the next generation of consoles," principal program manager Cody Bird said on a recent podcast with Larry "Major Nelson" Hryb.
Bird also outlined the updated storefront in a new blog post. More than anything, he stressed that the new store performs "more than twice as fast as before" on Xbox One (which suggests Xbox Series X won't even blink), and this applies to both launching the app and loading individual pages.
Bird says the store's feature set has also been greatly expanded. You'll now be able to use more specific tags and filters to sort games, and the store's wish list has been rebuilt to make it easier to add items and check what you have on your list. With backwards compatibility becoming even more central for Xbox, the store will also show game prices across generations, and you'll be able to add games from other generations to your shopping cart or wish list directly.
In another move to unify its platforms, Xbox is rebranding Xbox Game Pass to just Game Pass.