Published: Fri, March 15, 2019
IT | By Lester Massey

Microsoft's Bringing Xbox Live to Android and iOS

Microsoft's Bringing Xbox Live to Android and iOS

Xbox Live is heading to mobile.

With the new SDK, developers will be able to leverage Xbox's trusted game identity, cross-platform integration, achievements, and other services that the company hopes will entice mobile game developers to use its platform. "If you watch what we've done, especially with Minecraft, over the past few years we've taken Xbox Live to as many platforms as Minecraft is on as possible. It is also a safe and inclusive network that has broken down boundaries in how gamers connect across devices", the announcement on Microsoft's developer blog states. Specifically, the company is releasing an SDK (software development kit) that will enable Android and iOS developers to take advantage of the Xbox Live community. Microsoft's own Minecraft supports cross-play between Xbox One, Switch and PC players, as does the popular multiplayer game Rocket League.

"Historically, our lineup of game developer tools has been varied and lived in pockets all across Microsoft", Kareem Choudhry, Microsoft corporate vice president of gaming cloud said in a briefing ahead of the big Game Developers Conference this week. That includes includes a trusted identity network based on Microsoft accounts, a frictionless integration for developers (Xbox Live-enabled games were notoriously hard to develop in the Windows 8/Windows Phone era due to Microsoft's strict guidelines), as well as many ways to keep mobile gamers engaged with achievements, crossplay, and more. Microsoft wants to use its Azure services such as PlayFab, Xbox Live, and soon, Project xCloud, to help developers reach gamers wherever they are, on whatever device they want to use.

Choudhry remained tight-lipped when asked about the prospects of seeing Xbox Live on rival consoles, but reiterated Microsoft's desire to keep building bridges. Today we got the official announcement. but Nintendo Switch support is mysteriously missing.

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