Microsoft has implied that xCloud streaming could be available as an app on your television within a year, negating the need for a console.
The Xbox Series X and S have now launched everywhere in the world but even if stock wasn’t an issue it’s unlikely that Microsoft would be expecting them to outsell the PlayStation 5 straight out of the gate.
However, as has been made clear for a long while now, consoles are only a part of the current Xbox plan – even if they’re still the most important element in the short term.
Streaming service xCloud is already working impressively well but it’s not yet something Microsoft has focused on, but that sounds like it may change fairly quickly – as Xbox boss Phil Spencer is now talking about an Xbox app on your television within a year.
‘I think you’re going to see that in the next 12 months,’ said Spencer in an interview with The Verge. ‘I don’t think anything is going to stop us from doing that.’
The second comment is a reference to the fact that Apple will not allow game streaming on iOS, which is why xCloud is currently Android only, but there are no such restrictions for televisions.
Spencer’s comments are not a surprise, as not only does it seem a logical progression but he’s already hinted at free hardware with a theoretical Game Pass Platinum subscription – a ‘streaming stick’ similar to the Chromecast dongle needed to make Stadia work on an ordinary television.
There are also plans to integrate xCloud into Facebook Gaming, now that Microsoft has abandoned Mixer, but Spencer has insisted that consoles will still be relevant for a long while to come.
‘I don’t think these will be the last big pieces of hardware that we ship,’ he said in reference to the Xbox Series X and S.
Whether that’s meant to imply that there will still be a new generation of consoles in another seven years or so is unclear but there are certainly already rumours of a third new Xbox console, possibly called the Xbox Series V.
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