According to leaked emails that have surfaced from the ongoing FTC v. Microsoft case, it has been revealed that Microsoft has serious intentions to stream PC games through its Xbox Cloud Gaming service using its Azure servers. The emails, exchanged between Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella and Phil Spencer in July 2021, discuss the potential for Microsoft to compete with Google’s Stadia as a white-label cloud gaming service for developers.
The emails indicate that Microsoft plans to leverage their Azure GPU SKU to stream PC native games, allowing for greater reuse scenarios to recoup costs. There are also references to a suitable Azure SKU being developed to meet external demand for Infrastructure-as-a-Service (IAAS) and to run xCloud PC streaming.
This revelation comes as no surprise, as Microsoft previously announced plans to support existing game libraries on Xbox Cloud Gaming by the end of 2022. However, no updates have been provided since then. Additionally, Microsoft has abandoned plans for a dedicated subscription version of Xbox Cloud Gaming.
Earlier this year, Microsoft signed a 10-year deal with EE, a British mobile network, to bring Xbox PC games to their customers. This partnership suggests that Microsoft is nearing the completion of its Azure service for streaming PC games.
In the leaked emails, Phil Spencer also commented on Google’s Stadia, expressing surprise at its lack of progress and speculating that Google may be shifting its focus towards turning Stadia into a Google Cloud SKU. As of January 2023, Google has officially announced the shutdown of its Stadia service, leaving a potential gap in the market that Microsoft may seek to exploit.
Cloud gaming continues to be a significant area of interest and competition in the gaming industry. Microsoft’s plans to stream PC games through Xbox Cloud Gaming demonstrates their commitment to expanding their reach and offering a diverse range of gaming options to players.
– FTC v. Microsoft case
– Internal emails between Satya Nadella and Phil Spencer