The XBMC team have announced the first beta of the next version of XBMC codenamed Gotham. The new release include hardware decoding on Android 4.0, this should make XBMC run much smoother on Android devices, there is a build for ARM and one for x86 devices. The performance on the Raspberry Pi has been improved, opening libraries and browsing content is much faster as is loading of images and the starting of videos is much faster.

The UPnP features have been improved, XBMC now has Play Using (which sounds very much like Windows Play To) where you can play media from one XBMC install to another XBMC install. You can also browse the UPnP library on a tablet and send the video to your XBMC connected to your TV. It also have a nice feature were watch statuses are also synced across devices so you can start playback on one device and continue watching on another

3D support has been added: SBS, TAB, anaglyph and interlaced formats are supported. XBMC still can’t play 3D blurays and its software only decoding of some 3D formats so a high powered CPU would be required.

Other changes include an improvement to the Audio Engine, improved touchscreen support, settings improvements (there is a beginner option that restricts some of the more advanced settings). Plus there are a ton of bug fixes and other improvements.

You can read all about the changes and the download links on the xbmc blog.

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