Microsoft has started testing streaming games from its xCloud platform through a web browser.
Sources familiar with the Microsoft said on Xbox For site The Verge: Staff are now testing the web version of xCloud before a public preview.
The service allows Xbox players to access their games through the browser, and allows xCloud to work across Apple devices, such as: iPhone and iPad.
The web version of xCloud is very similar to how xCloud currently works across Android tablets and phones.
The web version includes a simple player with game recommendations, the ability to resume recently played games, and access to all cloud games available through Xbox Game Pass Ultimate.
After running the game, it plays in full screen mode, and you need a joystick to play Xbox games that are streamed via the browser.
It is not immediately clear what resolution Microsoft is broadcasting the games with through this web release.
The software giant uses the Xbox One S server for its current xCloud infrastructure, so full 4K broadcasts won’t be supported until backend hardware upgrades to Xbox Series X components this year.
Microsoft plans to bundle this web version of xCloud into the PC version of the Xbox app via Windows 10 as well.
It seems that the web version is currently limited to Chromium browsers, such as: Google Chrome and Microsoft Edge, similar to Google’s Stadia service.
Microsoft is planning some form of public preview of the xCloud web platform in the spring, and this broader internal test indicates that the preview is very close.
The big driver behind this web release is support for iOS and iPadOS devices, as Apple imposes restrictions on iOS apps and cloud services, and Microsoft was unable to support iPhone and iPad devices when it launched xCloud in the beta version of Android last year.
Apple said Microsoft needs to send the games individually for review, a process the software giant has described as a bad customer experience.