Microsoft does not intend to skip out on releasing xCloud on iOS.
Even before its official rollout, xCloud – the game streaming portion of Xbox Game Pass, has only been available on Android. Apple’s App Store restrictions require that each app is individually submitted for review.
This is the main reason why no one, including Microsoft and Google with Stadia, are able to properly offer their game streaming services on iOS. It wouldn’t make sense for these companies to submit each individual game for review, as that would defeat the purpose.
The solution, according to a new Business Insider report, is to simply offer access through a web browser and eschew the App Store altogether. Microsoft has reportedly already informed staff of this plan, which is set to become a reality in 2021.
“We absolutely will end up on iOS with Game Pass,” head of Xbox Phil Spencer reportedly told employees.
No specifics about this web-based app are known at this point, including whether it would land Microsoft in hot water with Apple. Indeed, this solution is not entirely novel. Amazon’s upcoming Luna game streaming service also has a web-based solution for iOS.