Microsoft has formally announced Project xCloud, a new program that will allow you to stream console games to mobile devices. The current plan is for Microsoft to fill data centers with hardware that is capable of running and streaming console-quality games. It’s a technological concept that we’ve seen other, similar services utilize, (such as Google Stadia) but the big twist in this instance is that Microsoft intends to use the service to bring Xbox games to many modern devices that have a screen.
Xbox representatives made it clear that Microsoft doesn’t intend for this technology to replace the Xbox. Instead, it’s designed to give Xbox gamers a way to play their games away from their consoles and for those without an Xbox console to enjoy some of the system’s games on a variety of platforms. They’ve made it clear in the past that they are very interested in exploring the growing world of video game streaming.
At the same time, it’s hard to believe that this new initiative won’t factor heavily into Microsoft’s next-gen console plans. Between the rumors that one of Microsoft’s next consoles will be a next-gen “streaming-only” device and what we already know about the Xbox Series X, it seems that Microsoft really is trying to think beyond consoles.
Microsoft has confirmed that the company has gotten all its partners up-to-speed on its xCloud plans, and they’ve already begun working on their contributions to the service. It seems that we really are entering the era of cloud gaming.
Here’s everything we know about Microsoft’s Project xCloud:
Project xCloud Release Date
No date has been set for the full release of Project xCloud, but the public preview will begin in October on Android devices in the US, UK, and Korea. You can sign up for a chance to join the preview program here. The preview will begin with access to Halo 5, Gears 5, Sea of Thieves, and Killer Instinct. Check out the system requirements for eligibility.
Project xCloud is also being made available to iOS users, but only about 10,000 people will initially be able to access the program. The service’s iOS beta will also only initially be available in the U.S, U.K, and Canada. Furthermore, only Halo: The Master Chief Collection will initially be available. You can find out more about xCloud’s iOS beta via this website.
Project xCloud Preview
We got our hands on Project xCloud earlier this year. You can check out our impressions of the new cloud gaming service here.
Project xCloud Trailer
Microsoft revealed its Project xCloud initiative with the following preview that hints at the big plans they have in store.
Matthew Byrd is a staff writer for Den of Geek. He spends most of his days trying to pitch deep-dive analytical pieces about Killer Klowns From Outer Space to an increasingly perturbed series of editors. You can read more of his work here or find him on Twitter at @SilverTuna014.