Microsoft to bring Xbox Live to Android, iOS and Nintendo Switch

Microsoft's Xbox Live ecosystem is going to get a whole lot bigger

Xbox One

Microsoft is preparing a software development kit (SDK) that will allow developers to integrate its Xbox Live gaming service into games that support cross-play between PC, Xbox One, Nintendo Switch, Android and iOS.

As spotted by Windows Central, a description for an upcoming Game Developers Conference (GDC) session teases how the SDK will expand Xbox Live from 68 million active players across 400 million devices to two billion mobile devices.

The platform, which Microsoft refers to as XDX, will allow players to carry over their achievements history, friends lists, clubs and more between platforms. The goal is to keep gaming communities engaged and active, regardless of platform.

Microsoft says XDX’s unified ecosystem will also help developers focus more on making the actual games, rather than the infrastructure surrounding them. Further, Microsoft envisions XDX as a stepping-stone towards allowing players to “watch, buy, play, pause, and continue their games from one device to the next.”

Currently, Microsoft’s only Xbox Live mobile integration comes through achievements for a select few smartphone games that it published, including Minecraft: Pocket Edition and Halo: Spartan Assault. 

Meanwhile, the company supports cross-platform play between Xbox One, PC, Nintendo Switch and mobile on a number of games, including Minecraft, which it owns, and Epic Games’ Fortnite. 

XDX is part of a larger effort from Microsoft to expand its gaming presence outside of the Xbox and PC ecosystems. Last October, the company also revealed that it is working on Project xCloud, a streaming service that aims to bring console-quality gaming experiences to mobile devices.

More information on XDX and Microsoft’s larger cross-platform plans will be revealed at GDC on March 18th in San Francisco.

Source: GDC