We’re not going to beat around the bush with this one: Xbox Music leaves a lot to be desired on Windows 8 (and Windows Phone 8), so with every little update we get a tad excited.

Today, Microsoft is pushing out an update for the Music portion of your PC or Surface bumping it from version 1.1.139.0 to 1.1.144.0. Luckily for you we also have a corresponding changelog so you know what to look for...

Changes for 1.1.144

  • Improvements to simplify access to streaming music for free
  • An update to further streamline the transition from a trial subscription to a paid Xbox Music Pass
  • A fix to minimize occasional playback concerns
  • Additional minor fixes

The timing of the update seems to coincide with Microsoft’s official rollout of the Xbox Music Pass, which we covered earlier in the week. 

In addition, though it’s unmentioned above, the performance of the app in terms of gesture reaction and transitions is seemingly much better with this update. In laymen’s terms, the lag is all but gone. And while that might not matter on a i7 quad core system on the Surface RT it needs all the software optimization it can get, making this a nice update for those users.

To force an update check on our Windows 8 machine, simply launch the Store and go to Settings. Under App Updates you can have it manually check for the new version of Xbox Music.

Thanks, Andrew S. and Justin A., for the tip!