Apple's Answer To Xbox Live Launches Next WeekS

Friends lists, matchmaking, and a unified multiplayer gaming experience come to the iPhone in next week with the release of Apple's Game Center in iOS 4.1.

Apple first revealed plans for its unified gaming service back in April, and we've been waiting patiently for news of its release since then. Today at Apple's special event in San Francisco, Steve Jobs revealed that the Game Center will be a part of next week's iOS 4.1 update for the iPhone and iPod Touch.

Games like Angry Birds were featured on the big screen behind Jobs, showing off the Game Center interface.

The new service adds Xbox Live-like features to the iPhone and iPod Touch, including persistent screen names, enhanced multiplayer functionality, and score comparisons. The system will also make it easier to discover other games related to the ones you are playing.

What about iPad users? They'll have to wait until November, when iOS 4.2 brings Game Center to the iPod Touch's big brother, along with the long-awaited multi-tasking capability.

Apple's Answer To Xbox Live Launches Next WeekS

Images via Gizmodo