Microsoft officially debuted its xCloud game streaming service as part of Xbox Game Pass Ultimate in September earlier this year. It only arrived on Android devices at launch, with Apple’s App Store policies restricting access on iOS devices. Microsoft condemned the move and redirected its efforts to bypass the restrictions and make xCloud game streaming available on more platforms. Today, the company confirmed the timeline for when and how xCloud will become available on iOS and Windows PCs.
In an official blog post, Microsoft reveals that its cloud gaming service will extend to iOS and Windows PCs in Spring 2021. It will initially be in beta and be accessible via the web browser on both platforms. The Xbox Windows app will also be updated to support xCloud game streaming.
“In Spring 2021, we will take the next step in our journey to reach more players around the world by making cloud gaming as part of Xbox Game Pass Ultimate available on Windows PCs through the Xbox app and browser, and iOS devices through mobile web browser,” reads the blog post.
The rumors for Microsoft’s plan to bring cloud gaming to iOS devices through the web browser were making rounds for some time now. If you compare xCloud to its rivals, then it is late to add web browser support. The streaming service was in testing for over a year and only launched on Android. Google Stadia and Amazon’s Luna, on the other hand, are two services that had web browser support on launch day.
Microsoft, along with Nvidia’s GeForce Now and Google Stadia, is now rushing to bring cloud gaming to iOS users via a web browser. Apart from support for new platforms, it is also essential for xCloud to expand to new countries. It will enable Microsoft to further optimize the service.
In line with the same, Microsoft adds — “we’ll bring cloud gaming with Xbox Game Pass Ultimate to new markets, including Australia, Brazil, Japan, and Mexico.” The company is already testing the service in beta at these locations. Now, I know you must be thinking – Is xCloud available in India? When will xCloud gaming service launch in India? Microsoft has not offered a concrete answer so there’s no way to know when the cloud gaming service will launch in India. Just stay for more updates.