Microsoft Wants to Expand Xbox Live Capabilties on iOS and Android 'In a Big Way'

Microsoft has been aiming to entrench its popular Xbox Live service into both the iOS and Android ecosystems for several years, having introduced its first Xbox-compatible app SmartGlass in 2011, along with a few other iOS and Xbox hybrid apps.

SmartGlass, which is also available for the Xbox One, is designed to be a companion app that allows gamers to access and control their Xbox game consoles to browse content and track achievements. The SmartGlass app also allows an iOS device to be used as a remote control and a keyboard for the system.

xboxone
Microsoft may be aiming to expand Xbox Live on iOS even further, according to a new report from The Verge, which suggests the company wants to poise Xbox Live as an optional replacement for Game Center.

While Microsoft has experimented with achievements on iOS and Android recently, the company is planning to push Xbox Live cross-platform in a big way soon. Sources familiar with Microsoft’s plans tell The Verge that Microsoft is building a platform to extend Xbox Live functionality to iOS and Android games.

Back in December of 2012, Microsoft experimented with an iOS game that provided gamers with Xbox Live achievements for reaching in-game milestones. The company plans to expand on this concept, making it easier for iOS and Android developers to incorporate Microsoft's framework into games on their respective platforms.

Microsoft already offers tools that allow Xbox Live functionality to be integrated into games, but to access them developers are required to be certified through Microsoft, which is a significant barrier to entry.

According to job listings found by The Verge, Microsoft is currently assembling a team that will create an "open-source, lightweight, extensible and scalable" framework that spans multiple platforms including the Windows Store, Windows Phone, iOS, and Android. Such a system, with fewer restrictions, could make it easier to integrate Xbox Live into apps and games.

Apple and Google both have proprietary game progress tracking in the form of Game Center and Google Play Games, but Microsoft appears to be aiming to get Xbox Live on all platforms, leading to a unified achievement system that would work with multiple systems.

Popular Stories

Apple WWDC24 Apple Intelligence hero 240610

Apple Explains iPhone 15 Pro Requirement for Apple Intelligence

Wednesday June 19, 2024 4:48 am PDT by
With iOS 18, iPadOS 18, and macOS Sequoia, Apple is introducing a new personalized AI experience called Apple Intelligence that uses on-device, generative large-language models to enhance the user experience across iPhone, iPad, and Mac. These new AI features require Apple's latest iPhone 15 Pro and iPhone 15 Pro Max models to work, while only Macs and iPads with M1 or later chips will...
Apple Intelligence General Feature

Apple Intelligence Features Not Coming to European Union at Launch Due to DMA

Friday June 21, 2024 9:44 am PDT by
Apple today said that European customers will not get access to the Apple Intelligence, iPhone Mirroring, and SharePlay Screen Sharing features that are coming to the iPhone, iPad, and Mac this September due to regulatory issues related to the Digital Markets Act. In a statement to Financial Times, Apple said that there will be a delay as it works to figure out how to make the new...
iPhone 16 Pro Max Generic Feature 2

5 Biggest Changes Rumored for iPhone 16 Pro Max

Wednesday June 19, 2024 5:00 am PDT by
Given Apple's rumored plan to add an all-new high-end tier to its iPhone 17 series in 2025, this could be the year for Apple to bring its boldest "Pro Max" model to the table — the kind of iPhone 16 upgrade that stands tall above its siblings, both figuratively and literally. If you have been holding out for the iPhone 16 Pro Max, here are five of the biggest changes rumored to be coming...
Apple Vision Pro 2 Feature 2

Apple Reportedly Suspends Work on Vision Pro 2

Tuesday June 18, 2024 8:17 am PDT by
Apple has suspended work on the second-generation Vision Pro headset to singularly focus on a cheaper model, The Information reports. Apple was widely believed to have plans to divide its Vision product line into two models, with one "Pro" model and one lower-cost standard model. The company is said to have been deprioritizing the next Vision Pro headset over the past year, gradually...
back to school 2024

Apple's 2024 Back to School Sale Launches, Up to $150 Gift Card With Mac or iPad

Thursday June 20, 2024 4:29 am PDT by
Apple has launched its annual Back to School promotion for college students in the United States. This year's promotion offers a free Apple gift card with the purchase of an eligible Mac or iPad. Apple is also offering students 20% off AppleCare+ plans. Apple is offering a $150 gift card with any new MacBook Air, MacBook Pro, or iMac, and a $100 gift card with the purchase of any new M4 iPad ...
iOS 17

Apple Releases First Public Beta of iOS 17.6

Thursday June 20, 2024 10:18 am PDT by
Apple today seeded the first betas of upcoming iOS 17.6 and iPadOS 17.6 updates to public beta testers, with the betas coming a few days after the initial iOS and iPadOS 17.6 developer betas. Public beta testers can get the beta by opening up the Settings app, going to the Software Update section, tapping on the "Beta Updates" option, and toggling on the iOS 17 or iPadOS 17 Public Beta....

Top Rated Comments

Leonard1818 Avatar
135 months ago
But...but...but.... this is MICROSOFT we're talking about here... they can't *possibly* do anything GOOD, right? Right?!! Guys....???? right...?
Score: 11 Votes (Like | Disagree)
TheHateMachine Avatar
135 months ago
xbox live has been around for ten years now
game center is a copy and not a very good one either

Keep your facts out of this, we need to have more blind fanboy rage and hate.
Score: 9 Votes (Like | Disagree)
ChrisCW11 Avatar
135 months ago
And Apple is better?

I'm sure the app will only take a day for them to develop. They just don't care about quality.

Apple ain't exactly been the poster child for software quality these days. You might want to review some the the stories posted on this site over the last few months before you start calling the kettle black.
Score: 9 Votes (Like | Disagree)
brinary001 Avatar
135 months ago
This is why I love Microsoft more than Apple (when it comes to services, calm down). Microsoft will do everything possible to get things like OneDrive, XBL, and Office onto Apple devices, but will Apple do the same with their counterparts? No. They're way too proud to even think about going down that road.
Score: 9 Votes (Like | Disagree)
MattG Avatar
135 months ago
"...because we know nobody uses our mobile devices."

;)
Score: 7 Votes (Like | Disagree)
ArtOfWarfare Avatar
135 months ago
Oh boy, I can't wait for Microsoft to copy someone else's free service but charge a subscription fee for it. Can you imagine? It'll be just like Game Center, but cost $20/year for no apparent reason! How exciting - the possibilities are limitless.

Just like they've done with every other internet service they've ever made. (That's why I will never buy an Xbox: although it has a counterpart for every PlayStation feature, the features are free on PlayStation but have subscription fees on Xbox.)
Score: 4 Votes (Like | Disagree)