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Xbox Game Pass cloud gaming confirmed for iOS and Windows

Microsoft has confirmed its ‘xCloud’ cloud game streaming service will be available on iOS and Windows PCs in the new year.

Following its launch on Android as part of Game Pass Ultimate subscription, the Xbox-maker has revealed its plans to expand the cloud-based service to new platforms next spring.

In a blog post, Microsoft says Game Pass Ultimate will be available on Windows PCs through the Xbox app and, as expected, on iOS devices through the web browser. Initially, it will arrive in beta.

Apple, of course, has App Store restrictions in place which have made it all but impossible to launch the service in a self-contained standalone application. Bringing it to the Safari browser is thought to be the next best thing.

Microsoft says the expansion will open up the Xbox ecosystem to a billion more devices, giving many more people a path to playing the vast library of games beyond the Xbox Series S and Xbox Series X consoles launched last month.

Related: Best Xbox Series X Games

On the Xbox Wire blog, Jarret West, CVP of Microsoft Gaming wrote: “[W]e envision a seamless experience for all types of players; whether it’s playing Minecraft Dungeons with your Xbox friends using touch controls on an iPhone, or jumping into a Destiny 2: Beyond Light strike on a Surface Pro when you have a break between meetings.”

A couple of weeks ago there were rumours Microsoft was planning to launch the Game Pass app for smart TV operating systems, which would open up even more screens to potential Xbox gamers. However, that wasn’t mentioned by Microsoft in today’s update.

Elsewhere in the post, Microsoft heralded the success of the new systems. It says over 1.6 million game upgrades have been delivered to the Series X/S consoles via the Smart Delivery service, while 40% of people playing Xbox for the first time are doing so via the Series S.

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