Microsoft Wants To Stream Console Games To PCs And Phones

Microsoft is actively developing a cloud-based game streaming service.

During a recent internal company meeting, sources tell The Verge that a working game service was demoed. Cloud servers were streaming Halo 4 to a Windows PC, as well as a Nokia Lumia 520 smartphone. The report also says that the latency between the servers and the Lumia 520 was only 45 ms.

Just as interesting as the cloud service is how one would play games on a mobile phone or tablet. The Lumia 520 was paired with an Xbox controller (it’s unknown if the controller was a 360 model or an Xbox One model), with some sort of USB converter accessory connecting the two. Using a 360 controller with a PC is old news, but there’s never been official support for the controller on Windows Phone devices.

All of Microsoft’s cloud gaming plans are still in development or in the prototype phase, as the company looks to play catch-up with Sony. After buying Gaikai in 2012 for roughly $400 million, Sony has slowly but surely revealed its cloud gaming plans. Streaming PlayStation 3 games to the PlayStation 4 is the most recent news from Sony, while we’ve heard nothing from Microsoft until today’s leak.

Microsoft has hinted that it wants to offer Xbox 360 game streaming on the Xbox One, but that plan is still up in the air, it seems.

And suddenly, a Windows RT tablet looks all the more interesting…

Join the Conversation   

* required field

By submitting a comment here you grant GameFront a perpetual license to reproduce your words and name/web site in attribution. Inappropriate or irrelevant comments will be removed at an admin's discretion.

6 Comments on Microsoft Wants To Stream Console Games To PCs And Phones

Russell

On September 26, 2013 at 3:57 pm

I would pay for a streaming service through Microsoft if they let me stream XBOne games to my PC.

Devin Connors

On September 26, 2013 at 4:07 pm

@Russell
This is not confirmed, but I think Microsoft just makes it a component of Xbox Live.

Also unconfirmed, but I bet Sony rolls out a similar strategy. Maybe not to all mobile, PC devices, but only to Sony branded phones, tablets, and laptops.

-Devin Connors

AxΣtwin

On September 27, 2013 at 12:09 am

This is a surprisingly good idea from MS. Depending on how payment plan, this might be something I seriously look into.

@ Devin – Sony wouldn’t and I don’t think they can do that.

There are 2 reasons why they wouldn’t do it. 1. It make no sense to stream PS3 possibly even PS4 games exclusively to Sony brand cell phones and tablets when PC gaming still makes up a larger percentage of gamers. 2. Could you imagine the outrage if Sony actually said their service would only available to PC gamers if they owned a Sony brand laptop? Any goodwill Sony might have cultivated with non-Sony loyalists would be gone in an instant. I’m pretty sure even Xbox loyalists would take a step back and say “damn, that’s cold”.

The reason I don’t think they can is simply because is there a way, from a software point of view, to differentiate between a Sony brand and a non-Sony brand laptop? Even if there is, I’d give it 30-60 days. That’s how long it would take for there to be a Sony Virtualbox program to hit the web. It would trick the streaming program into thinking you’re on a Sony brand product. Then I’d give it 9-12 months before Sony either starts dropping the banhammer or wakes up and realizes it was such a boneheaded decision to try to create a sense exclusivity among PC “platforms”.

Hmm

On September 27, 2013 at 2:32 am

First good gaming idea Microsoft have had in ages.

michael

On September 27, 2013 at 10:36 am

This wont make a difference. I will not pay a service or a full $60 dollar price tag for a stream version of any game. I am already paying my internet subscriber for the best service.
P.C. is on the verge on shutting down both microsoft and sony in the video game market and I am anticipating this moment in the years to come.

Foehunter82

On September 27, 2013 at 11:07 am

Or, I don’t know, maybe make a PC version of the game instead of streaming. The goal is for gamers to actually have a copy of the game, not pay a “rental fee” to play it.

@Axetwin: Exclusivity was a boneheaded move by console developers to begin with. Sure, it helps them profit more from their games, but the result is that those gamers that are dedicated to PC gaming (myself being one of them), get cut out. I won’t be buying a console (the last one I ever owned was SNES), and I certainly won’t be paying for a console game rental service just to play console games that I was never able to. I do agree, however that in order for a service like this to work, Microsoft, and possibly, Sony will have to grow-up and get used to the fact that exclusivity cannot remain if they want to continue doing business with PC gamers.