Microsoft has launched Xbox Cloud Gaming (a.k.a. Project xCloud) on iOS and PC in 22 countries.
The company has made the game streaming service accessible via browsers including Microsoft Edge, Chrome, and Safari on PC and mobile devices. It's a move that will allow Microsoft to circumvent any restrictive platform guidelines it encounters, and comes after Apple implemented guidelines that stopped the company from launching a streaming-centric app on the iOS App Store.
In a bid to improve the cloud gaming experience for Xbox Game Pass Ultimate members, Microsoft has been busy upgrading its datacenters with custom Xbox Series X hardware to improve frame rates and deliver faster load times. Touch controls have also been enabled for over 50 games, though cloud-enabled titles can also be played using a variety of compatible gamepads.
Commenting on the evolution of Xbox Cloud Gaming, Microsoft explained the PC and iOS launch marks a "key milestone" in its efforts to make high fidelity game experiences more accessible than ever.
"With billions of active Windows 10 PCs, iOS devices and Android phones, we want you to have new opportunities to play the deepest, most immersive games whenever and wherever you choose. Simply put, we’re bringing the Xbox experience directly to the devices you use most," said Xbox Cloud Gaming VP and head of product, Catherine Gluckstein in a blog post.
"We are creating a future that combines the gaming heritage of Xbox and the power of Azure. A future where we bring high fidelity, immersive games to the 3 billion players around the world."
Earlier this month, Microsoft outlined plans to future-proof older hardware like the Xbox One by using cloud technology to bring newer titles to those devices.