OUYA sent over a notice reporting that the “Abominable Snowman” firmware update has gone live, and is the biggest firmware release since the console went retail back in June. The update brings a new UI that provides a more “intuitive, visually appealing” design and enables developers to more effectively feature their games. The update also finally brings the external storage support out of beta.
"Just plug in a USB drive to get started," reads the OUYA blog. "Games on external storage are currently associated with the OUYA they were downloaded from. If you’ve modded your system with apps like Link2SD, you’ll want to undo your changes in order for external storage to work."
OUYA owners may notice some slowdown while a game is installing to a USB drive, the team states, and is something they plan to address in the near future. Owners will also notice that after downloading a game to external storage, sideloading an app will put it on the external space. Unfortunately, some games do not properly move their saved game data when moved to an external drive: if this occurs, move the game back to the internal storage.
"When connecting a USB drive, scanning can take a few minutes if lots of games (100+) are installed. We plan to improve this in future updates, but if you download all of DISCOVER, scanning will take a while," the team writes. "Occasionally on bootup with an external drive attached, the screen will go completely orange while the scanning takes place. You can wait for the scanning to finish, or reboot. We are looking into a fix."
As for the new UI, it now allows the team to update featured games and wallpaper on the fly. The new interface also includes new icons for installed games and those with available updates, better browsing thanks to relocating game titles under the tile art, and controller icons that now appear for all connected controllers (along with a low battery indication). Double-tapping the OUYA button also now brings up a System Menu rather than instantly exiting the game.
"Developers can now create links that allow you to download their game to your OUYA from the web," the team writes. "These links aren’t just confined to the ouya.tv site, they can be placed on any webpage. Keep an eye out for these links! You’ll see them start to appear on our newsletter, which you can sign up for on ouya.tv."
To read the full list of changes and improvements, head here.