Windows Phone Mango Game Hub Improvements

When Windows Phone 7 was released in October 2010 (November in the U.S.), one of its featured aspects was its Games Hub and its tie to Xbox Live. In Windows Phone “hubs” are collections of related content and apps. The Windows Phone display is a keyhole view of specific parts of a hub. The first major Windows Phone update is codenamed “Mango” and features a refresh of the Games Hub

Upping our game: What’s new in the Games Hub for Mango (Windows Phone Blog)

Some features which currently reside in the Xbox Live Extras tile in the games collection are being promoted to the top level of the Games Hub. This includes the user’s 3D animated avatar and achievements. The Xbox Live friends and messages sections are being integrated with the avatar view. Initiating Xbox Live messages and responding to friend requests can now be done directly on the phone. Multiplayer game requests and notifications are available right in Mango’s Games Hub.

Icons for games which currently dominate screen real estate are being shrunken to a list for easier navigation. There’s also a new “recently played games” list that shows the last played “tiles” (games) if you have more than 20 games on your phone.

One thing was not discussed in Microsoft’s post about the new Games Hub, however. Nothing was said about real-time gameplay between an Xbox 360 and a Windows Phone. This capability was demonstrated earlier this year. But, it is has not been discussed since that time.