Microsoft has confirmed that the Fall version of its Dashboard update for Xbox 360 will take place on December 4th, enabling users to view the friends lists of other Xbox Live members directly from the Dashboard and send messages, game invites and compare games and achievements.
The company noted that the prevalence of social networking sites like MySpace and Facebook has created an expectation from consumers for these kinds of features in an online community.
When the Fall Dashboard update is distributed, the new default setting on Xbox Live will be active, so that members may view the friends lists of other Xbox Live members immediately. Microsoft says that members may keep their lists private by changing their settings ahead of the update.
Members 18 and older may elect to make their list viewable by anyone, members 13 and olders may select friends only, and all members may block their friends list from view by anyone. Microsoft says that more information about the Fall Dashboard update will be released later this month.