Phil Spencer “Hasn’t Given Up” on xCloud for Other Consoles
More emails from the Epic vs Apple court case are trickling out along with plenty of high-level conversations between various CEOs. One email exchange between Epic CEO Tim Sweeney and Xbox president Phil Spencer reveals that Xbox’s interest in bringing xCloud on other consoles is ongoing.
There was regular chatter that Xbox had ambitions to bring its services to systems that weren’t, well, the Xbox. At its height, there were rumors the entire Xbox experience could come to the Nintendo Switch. Instead, some Xbox Live functionality exists on the Switch and xCloud is currently available on PC, Android, and iOS (through a slight workaround).
But according to an email between Spencer and Sweeney, Xbox is interested in getting its cloud streaming service to other consoles.
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“At the highest levels of [Microsoft] we are committed to pushing on these policies and continuing to expand our console platform capabilities,” Spencer writes. “You can chime in as you feel comfortable. But I did want to just let you know that I have your point on xCloud on other consoles (haven’t given up), F2P outside of Gold (we will get there and I want to partner with you), and our Store entitlement ideas as items I’m going to review with you to make progress.”
Microsoft’s xCloud is a cloud streaming service where users can play console games on their phones or PC directly from the cloud with no need to download or install a title. This is a service that’s included for subscribers of Xbox Game Pass Ultimate, which is Xbox’s popular service where users can download and install games from a library so long as they pay the monthly subscription cost.
While xCloud is exclusive to smartphones and PCs at this time, cloud streaming to consoles is possible and something PlayStation and Nintendo already do with PlayStation Now or Switch Cloud Streaming.
Getting xCloud on other consoles will be a hurdle and there are many financial deals needed to clear the way for it to happen. Especially since companies like PlayStation are hesitant to open their platform to external parties as seen in its conversations with Epic Games over cross-play. But xCloud on non-Xbox systems will help Microsoft expand its footprint beyond hardware and potentially help further its Game Pass service.
More details are coming from the Epic vs Apple case, and you can check out our overview from today’s proceedings here.
Matt T.M. Kim is IGN’s News Editor.