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Microsoft to launch cloud mobile gaming service in September, to cost $15

Microsoft to launch cloud mobile gaming service in September, to cost $15

Microsoft xCloud available in select markets from 15 September on Android

The blossoming mobile game streaming space is about to feel a little bit more crowded. Microsoft’s cloud game streaming service, xCloud, drops on September 15 on Android, with a promise of more than 100 games at launch for $14.99 per month.

Microsoft will offer the cloud-based gaming as part of its Xbox Game Pass Ultimate, a subscription that ties together Xbox Live Gold and Xbox Game Pass for console and PC.

The new service will compete against Google Stadia, Nvidia GeForce Now and PlayStation Now for the hearts, and dollars, of mobile gamers. It will start with a beta period as it “scales to millions of players around the world”, according to Microsoft.

The service will be available in 22 countries at launch, mostly in Europe as well as the US. No word yet on when the service will be available in the Middle East. Additionally, xCloud is not available for iOS devices for now.

Read: Apple refuses to host Facebook Gaming platform on iOS app store

Microsoft has shared a partial list of games available at launch, which includes Halo: The Master Chief Collection, Wasteland Remastered, Destiny 2, and Minecraft Dungeons, among others.

Cloud gaming services run games on remote servers and stream them directly to a user’s device, instead of users having to download the titles.

Research firm MarketsandMarkets estimated the cloud gaming market to be worth $306m in 2019, and has projected it will reach $3.1bn by 2024, at a CAGR of 59 per cent. The major driving factors driving this expansion are the commercialisation of 5G, the rise in the number of gamers, and the upsurge of immersive and competitive gaming on mobile. An increase in the number of internet users is also expected to drive cloud gaming growth during the forecast period, the firm said in a report.

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