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BUILD: Xbox LIVE and Windows 8 Integration, Windows Live SkyDrive Wave 5 Features Revealed

A BUILD session, detailing how developers can build Xbox LIVE games for Windows 8. Per BUILD sessions’ description:

“Xbox LIVE, Microsoft’s premier entertainment service, is coming to Windows 8. Whether you are developing a game or another kind of entertainment app for Windows 8, Xbox LIVE can help your app stand out in the crowd and help engage and delight users. You will learn about how to implement our well-loved features like Achievements, Multiplayer, Avatars and Community and brand new ones like roaming storage and profiles.”

We had earlier posted that Microsoft has confirmed that Xbox LIVE will be coming to Windows 8. And, also posted a screenshot of the new Xbox LIVE app on Windows 8, greatly resembling the new Xbox 360 Dashboard update coming this holiday season:

Chris Jones, Corporate Vice President for Windows Live, demostrated some of the upcoming new Metro-styled Windows Live apps coming in Windows 8. He also unveiled for the first time the upcoming web-based version of SkyDrive.

Devices integration
Jones demonstrated how it works, allowing users to directly access the entire hard drive of their cloud-connected PCs, directly from the SkyDrive web interface. Of course, for those of you who had been using Windows Live Mesh, this is already possible to do so via http://devices.live.com, but this brings it to the next level by presenting it in an easily-accessible and manageable manner, all from the same SkyDrive UI.

Multiple files selection and right-click options
Jone’s demo’d, where you can select check-boxes next to each file and folders to easily manage them all in one go. Also, revealed was a new right-click options similar to Hotmail (see the top information bar):

Storage manager and Windows app
The new update finally brings back the storage status on the left navigation bar. In addition, you will also find a new “Manage my storage” option directly beneath this, which will take you to the page for you to select or purchase your storage plans.

Also revealed in the left navigation bar is the link to “Get the Windows app”.

The screenshots also revealed a new features such as “simplified file sharing”, and hinted at “many more new features and improvements” coming in the update.

Finally, Jones also said that new SkyDrive APIs will be available as part of “Live Connect”, which will please many developers who are wishing to use SkyDrive’s cloud storage in their apps.

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