Microsoft wants to bring Xbox Live to Switch, Android, iOS

Isaac Cain
February 4, 2019

"Get a first look at the SDK to enable game developers to connect players between iOS, Android, and Switch in addition to Xbox and any game in the Microsoft Store on Windows PCs", reads an excerpt of the page.

Xbox Live on your iPhone?

The move was teased in the description for an upcoming session at GDC, where the plans will presumably be revealed in more detail.

There are already a handful of games that support Xbox Live and achievements on mobile devices, including big titles like Minecraft and not so big games like Microsoft Solitaire.

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Xbox Live is one of the largest, most engaged gaming communities on the planet with decades of experience providing managed game services to developers that save you time and unlock all of the social and engagement features that players love. Curiously, you'll also soon be able to earn achievements and receive Xbox Live support for a number of different mobile games, though we have no idea which ones.

The session page doesn't specifically mention PlayStation among the supported platforms, so it's not yet clear if games that use the SDK will silo off players on PlayStation into their own pool. As its name suggests, Xbox Live has traditionally been exclusive to Microsoft's Xbox games console family - though it was extended to include Windows as Games for Windows Live in 2007, then Windows Phone devices in 2010, and even found its way to the company's ill-fated Zune media player platform in 2008 as Zune Social. Almost half a billion devices isn't anything to sneeze at, but quadrupling that number to reach 2 billion devices by supporting additional devices would make Xbox Live the most expansive platform around.

The news underscores Microsoft's focus on bringing its services to multiple platforms. While this feature has been exclusive to Microsoft's games, it appears to be expanding to more titles.

The GDC runs from March runs 18 through March 22 and the cross-platform advancement may not be the only new technology on show from Microsoft.

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