Microsoft Reveals Xbox Cloud Gaming Service, Project xCloud

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The gaming world is changing, and we've seen the likes of Blade's Shadow, Nvidia's GeForce Now, Playstation Now, and even Google Chrome's own browser-based streaming solution gain traction over the previous year.

Yesterday, Microsoft announced Project xCloud, a new streaming service that will apparently let people play their favorite Xbox games from any device including your tablet, smartphone, PC, and of course, your gaming console. At first, Microsoft will be focussing on streaming to smartphones and tablets, providing the ability to play with a Bluetooth-enabled Xbox controller, or with a touchscreen overlay. The tech is expected to hit public beta in 2019.

The world is quickly moving towards not owning any physical content - we've gone from downloading and copying movies and series from various sources, to streaming everything on Netflix and Showmax.

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Recently, Google launched a game streaming service test called Project Stream, and now Xbox is on the bandwagon with Project xCloud - and the project kinda makes sense for Big M. Good old Microsoft has the infrastructure to bring game streaming to more countries than PlayStation Now currently reaches.

Project xCloud is to enter a public testing stage in 2019 and the technology, which sees Xbox One components installed in server datacenters, is meant to allow Xbox games to be played "on any device". As for how these games will be controlled on the mobile devices, wireless Xbox controllers will be used.

"Our goal with Project xCloud is to deliver a quality experience for all gamers on all devices that are consistent with the speed and high-fidelity gamers experience and expect on their PCs and consoles", the company said.

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Project xCloud will use custom server rack hardware to power the experience - all based on existing Xbox One console components. It's an ambitious project and one that's likely going to usher in more potential gamers who may not have considered buying a console.

Project xCloud is already up and running, but it'll take a while to come to market as the company works out latency and compression technology for the best experience.

So Project xCloud is coming, although it still has some way to go before its ready for prime time. Right now, it requires a 10 Mb/s internet connection but the technology will eventually dynamically scale to fit your internet connection, and even “push against the outer limits of whats possible on 5G networks”. Microsoft acknowledges the issue and says that they are working on it.

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Microsoft plans to start testing this streaming gaming in 2019.

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