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Microsoft is done waiting for you to come to Xbox. Instead, the company is gearing up to bring Xbox to wherever you are. This is part of the company’s Xbox Everywhere initiative, which was expanded yesterday by adding Fortnite to Xbox Cloud Gaming. While you can already stream games from the cloud to your phone and PC, Microsoft also has plans to expand access through your family room TV, according to people familiar with the plans.
Within the next 12 months, Microsoft plans to release an Xbox cloud game streaming device. It will likely look like an Amazon First Stick or maybe a small Roku-type drive. And just like a Roku, the Xbox streaming stick will let you access movie and TV services, plus a library of games through Xbox Game Pass Ultimate.
However, if you already have a Samsung Smart TV, you might be able to skip a separate device altogether. Microsoft is working closely with its partners at Samsung to develop an Xbox game streaming app for that company’s TVs. That should also debut in the next 12 months.
This move by Microsoft is not surprising. The company has repeatedly pointed out that it doesn’t really care how you get into the Xbox ecosystem. But while it has said that, it has also simultaneously invested huge resources in its dedicated Xbox consoles. This has been something of a concession that gaming hardware is still the best way to reach potential Game Pass subscribers.
But with games like Fortnite and Halo Infinite, Microsoft could appeal to an audience that’s ready to try free games but unwilling to invest in expensive consoles.
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