Microsoft is hoping its latest Xbox Series and Series S high-end, dedicated gaming consoles will become a central platform for any and all gaming-related services. The latest Xbox Edge web browser that Microsoft has introduced can fulfill the company’s ambitions.
Microsoft announced that the Xbox dedicated gaming consoles will get an Edge web browser. This should open up access to game streaming services such as Google Stadia and NVIDIA GeForce NOW.
Why is Microsoft offering a web browser for a gaming console?
Microsoft Xbox Series X|S will get a robust web browser in the form of the Edge browser. While the development seems mundane, a capable and reliable web browser was always noticeably absent on a gaming console.
For quite some time, neither Sony nor Microsoft bothered to develop a good-looking and powerful web browser. However, this is changing, and Microsoft is clearly leading the way.
Microsoft Edge browser for Xbox Series X and S opens up new cloud gaming possibilities https://t.co/P3CS5gi693
— XDA (@xdadevelopers) March 10, 2021
Apparently, Microsoft has already granted Alpha testers access to an early version of Microsoft’s new Chromium-powered Edge variant on Xbox One and Xbox Series X|S consoles.
New reports suggest the Xbox Edge browser strives to maintain the same level of compatibility that its traditional desktop counterpart offers. In other words, the Xbox Edge browser is as capable as its cousin that works on Windows 10 PCs.
As a direct benefit of having a browser on Xbox gaming consoles, gamers can now leverage the browser to run web applications ranging from remote game hosting and streaming services to chat apps such as Discord.
What does the Xbox Edge browser offer to buyers of Xbox Series S|X?
A browser has become the new favorite of companies that are launching or have launched game streaming services. This means games that gamers traditionally played on a PC or a game console, can be played through a web browser on any smart device with a screen.
In the near future, gamers will merely need a smart device that supports user input and is capable enough to launch and run a web browser. These devices include a tablet, smartphone, smart TV, etc.
The Microsoft Xbox Series S and Series X are more-than-capable gaming consoles. However, to date, they were restricted to games that Microsoft would offer or allow.
Game services such as GeForce Now, Google Stadia, Microsoft xCloud, are already available. These services stream remotely hosted games through a web browser. Additionally, companies such as Amazon are also actively working in this arena.
With the Xbox Edge browser, the Xbox Series X|S can easily and quickly become a multi-platform, or perhaps even platform-agnostic, gaming hub.
Interestingly, gamers will not have to wait long. There are a few demonstrations on YouTube already. Xbox users who have updated to the new Edge browser can play Steam games on Microsoft’s consoles via NVIDIA GeForce NOW.
As the video indicates, the game streaming platform works adequately. However, the Xbox Edge currently lacks mouse support, which means games such as Quake II RTX could be unplayable, for now.