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Microsoft’s xCloud for web browsers is on full display

Worn Out Gaming
Original Article on Worn Out Gaming.

Has anyone ever wondered what happened to Microsoft’s xCloud? For anyone unaware, xCloud is Xbox’s cloud-gaming platform that Microsoft tested. It allows gamers to play Xbox games on their phones, streamed from remote servers. Well, xCloud became Xbox Game Pass Ultimate. With the emergence of Game Pass comes the confusion about the term ‘xCloud.’ As it stands, Microsoft uses generic terms like “cloud gaming” now. What a strange tactic, considering Microsoft is still testing xCloud to bring gaming to web browsers.

xCloud Loading
xCloud – Microsoft

According to The Verge, Microsoft is testing the xCloud through the web. Discovering how to deliver the streaming platform across the web will make it possible for the iPhone and the iPad to play 100+ games on Xbox Game Pass Ultimate! Microsoft attempted to make the service accessible to iPhone Operating System (iOS), but Apple had questionable demands in place. Apple wanted Microsoft to submit individual games for Apple to review at a time. Microsoft disagreed with the practice, claiming it would be bad for consumers. 

Related Post: After price reveal, what is the value of Xbox Live?

What will xCloud be like on the web?

Android tablets and phones run xCloud already. The web version will work similarly; There is a simple launcher with recommended games and the ability to resume recently played games. Once launching a title, it runs in fullscreen mode. To play, you will need a controller. 

xCloud Web Dashboard
xCloud – Microsoft

At the moment, no one is speaking about the resolution the streamed games will be. It’s known that Microsoft is testing the web version using the Xbox One S. For that reason, web browsers won’t support 4K streaming. The Verge says Microsoft will upgrade the backend hardware to Xbox Series X components this year. Only then will 4K be possible.

The web version of xCloud is limited to Chromium browsers. This means that Google Chrome and Microsoft Edge can run xCloud. Apple runs its third-party browsers on Webkit, an open-source web browser engine typically used by Safari and other apps on macOS, iOS, and Linux. Should Microsoft manage to get web streaming running on Safari, there will be no iOS and iPadOS issues.

Microsoft may make Google Stadia obsolete

It’s no surprise that Microsoft’s Xbox Play Anywhere campaign will take the world by storm. The Google Stadia is a cloud gaming platform, but it does not have an extensive library of games like Xbox. Also, Apple blocked Google Stadia’s streaming services for the very same reason it stopped Microsoft in their tracks. As powerful as Google is, Microsoft has been in the video game industry for a long time. With 100+ titles on Game Pass, Xbox will lead the charge for video game streaming for a long time to come.

Microsoft will launch a public preview of xCloud web in Spring 2021. 

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