OK, I’m no fan of the Mii-rip-off avatards that Microsoft added to the Xbox 360 and Windows Phone last year, and wish they’d add the one crucial missing feature: A way to turn this thing off. But since that’s not going to happen, we’re going to have to learn to live with it.
And maybe have some fun with it. Now, there’s a way to add a Windows Phone to your avatard, for free. To do so, turn on your Xbox 360, click on the link “Join Laura Foy on Hot Apps” in the Spotlight section. Sit through the silly bit where Laura interacts with your avatard until it “jumps” into the tile and the demo starts. You’ll be presented with a virtual version of the Windows Phone UI that you can interact with using the Xbox 360 controller. Click on the “Keep the phone!” tile and then the “Tap here” message in the Messaging screen that pops up. Click Confirm Download.
When the download is complete, exit the demo and then navigate to My Xbox and then the profile card (mine reads Paul Thurrott); it has a picture of your avatard superimposed over it. Select that (click A on the controller) and then Customize Avatar. This launches the Avatar Editor, which I was hoping to never, ever, ever see again. Click on Change My Style and then Props. You should see the Windows Phone in there. Select it and a little Windows Phone will drop into your avatard’s hand. Click “B” for Back and then Select Save and Exit.
Since I spend literally no time editing my little character, I’m not even clear what role these props play or where, if ever, they surface.
Update: And just in case you didn’t think this was avatarded enough, apparently this is US-ony. Sigh. :)