The Xbox Series S was recently unveiled as a cheaper alternative to the Xbox Series X, both of which are set to debut November 10th, though pre-orders started on September 22nd. Whereas the Xbox Series X will set consumers back $499, the Series S is more budget-friendly at $299. However, while gamers may pay less upfront, they may end up spending more in the long-run to compensate for the Xbox Series S’ lack of storage. This could be a good thing for Microsoft’s xCloud gaming subscription service, which launched on September 15th, 2020.
Project xCloud is Microsoft’s new game streaming service, which promises to bring more than 100 games to Android devices, such as tablets and phones. As of now, unfortunately, it’s unclear when the service will become available on iOS, so iPhone and iPad users will have to sit tight.
Microsoft has confirmed they have plans to bring the service to all devices. “It’s our ambition to scale cloud gaming through Xbox Game Pass available on all devices, but we have nothing further to share at this time regarding iOS,” a Microsoft spokesperson told The Verge. xCloud will be included as part of Xbox Game Pass Ultimate subscription, and it also borrows its name from the cloud gaming feature of Game Pass. So, gamers who already have Xbox Game Pass Ultimate will be able to access xCloud for free, which is currently available in twenty-two countries at launch.
The Xbox Series S is seriously lacking in storage. While the Series X has 1 TB of custom NVMe, the Series S has half of that, at only 512 GB. With the average size of games being 40-50 GB, players are only going to be able to store up to 10 titles at once on the console, and even that’s pushing it. The number becomes smaller if players want to download larger games, like Red Dead Redemption 2 or Call of Duty: Modern Warfare, which easily take up more than 100 GB. This means Xbox Series S players will be looking towards external storage options in order to make it easier to access a variety of games at once.
It’s expected that the Xbox Series S will support external hard drives so players have more options for storage. But it’s tedious uploading games onto a hard drive and plugging it into the console, and it’s also not always efficient for portability. That’s why players will be incentivized to buy an Xbox Game Pass Ultimate subscription in order to access a variety of titles. Since xCloud will be bundled together with the Pass Ultimate, it will give these new gamers who are motivated to buy the Xbox Game Pass access to the streaming service as well, thereby increasing the reach of xCloud. So, following the release of the Xbox Series S, it’s reasonable to assume xCloud may see an increase in user activity, which will be a boost for the new gaming subscription service.
Source: The Verge
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