Game Pass Ultimate subscribers now have access to Xbox Cloud Gaming: xCloud will require 10Mbps speeds to offer 1080p at 60 FPS

Xbox Game Pass Ultimate Cloud Gaming
Xbox Cloud Gaming comes to iOS, Android, and Windows PCs across 22 countries. Pic credit: Shaun Greiner)/Flickr

The Xbox Cloud Gaming is now officially available to all Game Pass Ultimate subscribers. Be it a dedicated app or through a web browser, xCloud, powered by Xbox Series X hardware, is coming to a smartphone, PC, MacBook, or a tablet running Windows or iOS.

Microsoft has confirmed that all Game Pass Ultimate subscribers, across 22 countries, can now play several Xbox game titles on their smartphones, tablets, and PCs. The virtual game arcade is able to stream games from the cloud using Microsoft Edge or Google Chrome on Windows 10, and Safari browser on Apple iOS, iPadOS, and macOS devices.

Xbox Cloud Gaming to all eligible subscriptions:

Microsoft has been actively testing its Xbox Cloud Gaming, formerly known as xCloud, service. The game streaming service offers gamers the ability to stream games remotely hosted on Microsoft servers.

The Xbox Cloud Gaming was working on slightly dated Xbox One server blades, but Microsoft had promised it will upgrade all the servers with hardware that matches the Xbox Series X dedicated gaming console.

As promised, Microsoft officially announced that Xbox Cloud Gaming is now open to all Xbox Game Pass Ultimate subscribers. Gamers will also have access to remotely hosted games through a dedicated Xbox Game Pass app on Android.

Additionally, the service is available through modern-day web browsers such as Microsoft Edge, Google Chrome, as well as Apple Safari. Simply put, be it an Android or iOS smartphone, or be it a Windows 10 PC or an iMac or MacBook running macOS, or even an iPad, xCloud is available.

Microsoft has offered the service in 22 countries. The company even confirmed that it has upgraded its data centers with “custom Xbox Series X hardware”.

Microsoft claims these upgrades allow for “faster load times, improved frame rates, and an experience of a new generation of gaming”.

What will gamers with a Game Pass Ultimate subscription gain from Xbox Cloud Gaming?

The Game Pass Ultimate subscription costs just $15 per month. Needless to mention, this is a very lucrative price.

Any remote gaming service will have certain issues due to the internet connectivity. These include image compression and button-tap latency.

In an attempt to offer a stable, yet immersive experience, Microsoft will stream games at 1080p resolution. The frame rate too, will not exceed 60 FPS. The company recommends internet speeds of 10Mbps or higher for smooth gameplay.

Although the resolution and framerate may seem a little low, Microsoft has indicated that several subscribers of Xbox Cloud Gaming use their smartphones or tablets. To cater to these “mobile gamers”, Microsoft is offering touch-based controls for “more than 50 games”.

It is important to note that Xbox Cloud Gaming is still in the beta testing phase. Simply put, the service might not work for all. Moreover, not all games will run on the latest hardware.

Nonetheless, Microsoft is taking on Google Stadia, Amazon Luna, NVIDIA GeForce Now, and quite possibly even Walmart in the near future.

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