The migration of Xbox Live to new platforms has officially begun, as Microsoft announced Thursday that it will launch a new software development kit (SDK) for developers to include Xbox Live functionality in their mobile games on iOS and Android.
The new Microsoft Game Stack unites services such as Xbox Live, Azure, Visual Studio and PlayFab, the Seattle startup Microsoft acquired a year ago.
The move to open up Xbox Live to a wider audience is part of a bigger push to get Microsoft's tools and services to more platforms.
Microsoft has been pretty clear about its intentions to turn Xbox into more of a platform than a standalone console.
Rumors have been swirling for some time that Nintendo and Microsoft were up to "something" and while it was initially rumored that GamePass was headed to the Switch, Xbox Live integration may make a bit more sense.
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"If you've watched us for the past few years, we've taken a very inclusive approach".
Kareem Choudhry, Microsoft's gaming cloud chief said, "We believe so strongly in community, and Xbox Live really being at the heart of our gaming community".
With the SDK, game developers can pick and choose which Xbox Live features make it to their mobile games. It's called Game Stack and it means Azure, PlayFab, DirectX, Visual Studio, Xbox Live, App Center, and Havok will be offered as an ecosystem to work within on the platform of your choice, be that Xbox and Windows, or mobile devices, PlayStation, or Switch. "Really uniting all those communities together with a consistent singular experience for those gamers". However, if you are a Nintendo Switch gamer, then you may have to wait a little longer as Choudhry has also confirmed that it doesn't "have any specific announcements as it relates to Switch" but who knows what the future will hold.
The word "today" becomes especially interesting when you consider the rumours that Microsoft and Nintendo were buddying up.