Microsoft's Project xCloud game streaming service inches closer to public testing
Interest for game streaming services has been ramping up lately, especially after Google announced its Stadia platform. Microsoft has also been hard at work developing a similar service that would allow users to stream Xbox games on any devices with a stable Internet connection. This is currently known as Project xCloud, and, while Google might have managed to showcase its Stadia service first back in March, Microsoft is confident it can get the edge through a wider and more diverse game portfolio.
Expected to be showcased at E3 this year, Microsoft’s Project xCloud is almost ready for public testing. Xbox chief Phil Spencer recently tweeted that the project has entered the “Take Home” testing phase, which allows more Xbox employees to test the stability of the upcoming service. Spencer also mentioned that the public trials should come later this year, possibly right after E3. Of course, as with all initial trials, the scope of the test might be limited to North America only, but Microsoft is already working to spread Xbox One X-based server blades all across the world, as low latency is a key factor for the success of game streaming services.
Unlike Stadia, Project xCloud does not necessarily require a game controller. Smartphones and tablets may connect to a Bluetooth controller, but users can also expect to get custom touch-based control support. Initial Stadia tests have shown that FPS games may seem a bit laggy due to higher latency, and it would be interesting to see how Microsoft is going to circumvent this problem.