Microsoft has announced that it will soon launch an Xbox TV app, which will allow Game Pass Ultimate customers to watch the likes of Halo, Forza and more on their televisions without the need for a console or PC.
Xbox is working with “global TV makers” to bring the Xbox TV app to television. Using xCloud’s cloud-streaming technology, users will only need a subscription, controller and internet connection (at least 10 Mbps download speed) to play various games on the Game Pass service.
Game Pass Via xCloud is currently only available on mobile, tablet and console via dedicated app and web browser beta. However, Microsoft has also confirmed that xCloud support is coming to Xbox consoles, which could potentially mean you’ll be able to play supported games without having to download them.
The upcoming Xbox TV app seems like the most exciting addition though, enabling gamers to start playing in their living rooms without the need for an additional device. Microsoft has indicated before (via) ledge) to launch an Xbox Streaming Stick, which probably has the Xbox TV app preloaded. This would mean that those who have a TV without the smart features will still be able to use Game Pass.
Microsoft also revealed that it is improving the xCloud experience by updating its servers with Xbox Series X hardware, ensuring faster loading times, better frame rates, and updated graphics for optimized games.
Unfortunately there are no specific launch dates for the TV app and Series X server enhancements, but we have a feeling it won’t be a long wait.
The news of the Game Pass app for smart TVs is hardly a big surprise, but it’s an important step forward for Xbox and the rest of the gaming industry nonetheless. We already know how important Game Pass is, but being able to access it through your TV—without needing a PC or console—is a big step forward for the service.
This would open up a huge market for the Xbox, allowing anyone with a good Internet connection to jump into the game without the high up-front cost of a console or PC. We’ve already seen how successful the likes of Netflix and Disney Plus have been in recent years, so it makes a lot of sense for Xbox to follow suit.
Will xCloud make the console redundant? Not anytime in the near future, as streaming still can’t replicate the performance of physical consoles. And don’t forget that anyone using xCloud right now is relying on the Game Pass library. There are a lot of great games on the service, but it still has some noticeable omissions. But don’t take anything away from Xbox, it’s a generation-defining move that will make gaming more accessible and affordable in the future.