Microsoft's Project xCloud Will Connect Xbox Live to iOS, Android and Switch

Xbox Live on your iPhone?                  Microsoft

The new functionality isn't to be confused with the company's existing "Xbox Glass" software for smartphones: The XDK as described would allow developers to add full Xbox Live functionality, from Achievements to cross-platform gaming, to their non-Xbox titles on a range of platforms. Now a Game Developers Conference (GDC) session listing has revealed that it wants Xbox Live to power multiplayer gaming across iOS, Android, Nintendo Switch, Xbox and PC devices.

The description explains a little further: "Get a first look at the SDK to enable game developers to connect players between iOS, Android, and Switch in addition to Xbox and any game in the Microsoft Store on Windows PCs".

Microsoft already has a few games with Xbox Live support across mobile devices, most notably via Minecraft, which requires an Xbox Live login on Android, iOS, and Nintendo Switch. This expansion of Live means that, if a developer implements the features, you will be able to earn achievements, access your friend's list, and your clubs, from devices other than Microsoft apps and services; Microsoft is trying to make Xbox the backbone of the online gaming world.

The session page doesn't specifically mention PlayStation among the supported platforms, so it's not yet clear if games that use the SDK will silo off players on PlayStation into their own pool.

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This plays right into Microsoft's SaaS playbook, create a service, expand it to new platforms, and then grow its user base.

As reported by Windows Central, Microsoft is said to be planning to unveil this functionality during the Game Developer Conference (GDC) in March.

KitGuru Says: While I doubt we'll see Halo or Gears of War head to other platforms natively, Project xCloud could really shake things up as long as Microsoft can provide stable performance and image quality over a stream.

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