Xbox seems likely to bundle TV streaming sticks with Game Pass

One more platform for Xbox Game Pass

Xbox wasn’t kidding about bringing Game Pass and game streaming to every possible device. They’re available — either as a single service or a duo thing — on consoles, PC, and Android phones and tablets. Game streaming is coming to PC and web browsers sometime in the near future. There’s very likely an unforeseen platform jumping in the mix.

In an interview with Stratechery (behind a paywall but reported on by The Verge), Xbox head Phil Spencer discussed a possible strategy for getting Game Pass on televisions. Spencer said “I think you’re going to see lower priced hardware as part of our ecosystem when you think about streaming sticks and other things that somebody might want to just go plug into their TV and go play via xCloud.” 

It’s Xbox by way of the Amazon Fire stick or Google Chromecast. However, Spencer envisions a way to completely tie it into Xbox Game Pass. “You could imagine us even having something that we just included in the Game Pass subscription that gave you an ability to stream xCloud games to your television and buying the controller,” he elaborated.

This would fill an important void in the Xbox family. It’d allow users to essentially play Xbox games without owning any Xbox hardware beyond the TV stick. It’d feel like the traditional game-playing experience — much moreso than playing on your phone with a mount — and in the easiest way to buy into the Xbox ecosystem. The cloud has opened up a world of possibilities for Microsoft’s gaming division.

An Interview with Microsoft Executive Vice-President of Gaming Phil Spencer [Stratechery via The Verge]

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Brett Makedonski
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