Microsoft's Xbox cloud gaming coming to Apple iOS and PCs in 2021

Microsoft's Xbox Game Pass Ultimate is coming to Apple iPhone iOS in 2021.
Photo credit: Getty

Microsoft has announced its cloud game streaming service will be extended to Apple iOS devices and Windows PCs in 2021.

The service, previously called Project xCloud, is currently available on Xbox consoles and Android devices.

Using it, people play a large range of Xbox games run on a server in a data center near them, with the video streamed to their device while their interactions are relayed to the server in real time.

It's only available in a few North American and European countries and South Korea currently, but will be expanded to other territories including Australia next year.

"In [the northern hemisphere's] spring of 2021, we will take the next step in our journey to reach more players around the world by making cloud gaming as part of Xbox Game Pass Ultimate available on Windows PCs through the Xbox app and browser, and iOS devices through mobile web browser," says Microsoft.

"By adding over a billion devices as a path to playing in the Xbox ecosystem, we envision a seamless experience for all types of players; whether it’s playing Minecraft Dungeons with your Xbox friends using touch controls on an iPhone or jumping into a Destiny 2: Beyond Light strike on a Surface Pro when you have a break between meetings."

The cloud gaming service is offered as part of subscription service Xbox Game Pass Ultimate, which in New Zealand normally costs around $20 per month.

Microsoft had wanted to launch the service on iPhones as an app, but Apple refused to allow it, causing a public falling out between the two tech giants.

The web-browser-based version Microsoft has announced will bypass Apple's App Store restrictions.

It's not yet known when Microsoft will bring the cloud gaming service to New Zealand.