Microsoft has announced that the xCloud game streaming service will launch in 22 countries on September 15 for Xbox Game Pass Ultimate subscribers. In a new Xbox Wire post, it was revealed that xCloud will be coming to the following countries at launch:
- Czech Republic
- South Korea
- Sweden, Switzerland
- United Kingdom
- United States
The announcement also came included with a new video showcasing controller support on mobile devices. Xbox has confirmed that in addition to the official Xbox controllers, you can also use your DualShock 4 to play xCloud on your android device.
As far as mobile is concerned, xCloud will only launch on Android with no mention of iOS in sight. Given how strict Apple’s app store policies are, we don’t expect the xCloud app to be available there any time soon.
The xCloud game streaming service was recently merged in the Xbox Game Pass subscription service. All new and existing Xbox Game Pass Ultimate members will be able to enjoy xCloud. Game Pass Ultimate subscription starts as low as $1 for the first month, with a regular monthly price of $14.99 onwards.
Project xCloud was first announced back in 2018, and Microsoft’s recent focus on Game Pass and xCloud shows the platform-agnostic direction the company is moving in. Compared to PlayStation, Microsoft’s Xbox division is becoming more and more open for entry. That was clearly evident during the last Xbox Games Showcase, where more focus was on selling Game Pass rather than the Xbox Series X itself. Check out the following thread by Daniel Ahmad (Niko Partners) which explains more about Xbox’s open-platform strategy:
xCloud Won’t Be Available in India At Launch
While it’s nice that xCloud is a part of Game Pass, how the quality of service will be at launch remains to be seen. Recent game streaming services like Stadia and PS Now haven’t fared well, and their lack of extended country support is also a big part of their failure. While Microsoft does have the resources to support more countries at launch, the decision to not launch in a market as huge as India will come as a blow to fans in the country. If you want to know more about why the service isn’t available in India, read this article by The Mako Reactor for some clarification.
Xbox Game Pass Ultimate is now available with xCloud launching on September 15. Until it launches in India, if you want to test out game streaming for yourself, you might want to check out TechQuila’s guide on the same here.