At the pre-E3 briefing, Microsoft took the time to talk about how it will expand the audience and appeal of its Game Pass subscription. Soon, owners of modern Internet-connected TVs will start seeing Xbox/xCloud apps in their App Store. Additionally, the service is going to be made available in more world regions at reasonable price points, in more ISP bundles, through more Internet browsers, and through streaming hardware provided by Microsoft.
“We need to innovate to bring our games and services to more people around the world,” said Microsoft’s CVP of Gaming Experience and Platforms Liz Hameren. He said it would take creativity, especially with the introduction of the new Xbox Games Pass subscription suitable for worldwide consumption. However, the rewards will be worth it because “Game Pass works,” Hameren stressed. “It works for consumers, and it works for publishers.”
Perhaps the first upcoming proof of Microsoft’s Game Pass push will be the arrival of xCloud enabled apps for a range of connected TVs. It is being said that it will happen soon. The associated streaming hardware that has now been confirmed doesn’t have such a clear timetable for the rollout. Smart TV / Xbox streaming device owners will need a suitable Bluetooth controller.
Another imminent expansion of the available xCloud streaming possibilities is its arrival for Edge, Chrome and Safari internet browsers, which is due in the next few weeks. In addition, game streaming capabilities are being added to the Xbox app for PC and integrated into the console – which will enable “try before you download” experiences.
Microsoft’s Xbox Game Pass starts at $9.99/£7.99 and offers a library of over 100 games, including all Xbox Game Studio titles, at launch. The most recent figures show that the service has over 18 million subscribers.
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