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Microsoft's gaming boss responds to Stadia announcement, says they will "go big" at E3

By DPennington · 8 replies
Mar 20, 2019
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  1. The console wars have evolved with Google's entry into the cloud gaming arena, and Microsoft was watching very closely. In a memo to the internal Xbox team, Phil Spencer, Microsoft's head of gaming, responded to Stadia's launch by promising a big E3. "Google went big today and we have a couple of months until E3 when we will go big," Spencer hinted.

    The full internal memo was obtained and published by Thurrott, and it suggests that Spencer feels as though Google is carrying the torch Microsoft lit.

    Microsoft is working on its own game streaming service, called xCloud, with the intention of rivaling Google and other cloud platforms. Microsoft has also invested heavily in cross-play and more open gaming environments. Recently, Microsoft demoed xCloud for the first time and promised user trials later this year.

    Spencer was also complimentary of aspects of the Google Stadia platform, saying in the memo, "there were no big surprises in their announcement although I was impressed by their leveraging of YouTube, the use of Google Assistant, and the new Wi-Fi controller." Google is utilizing YouTube to allow users to quickly upload clips, preview the game, and share game save files.

    Here's the full memo:

    We just wrapped up watching the Google announcement of Stadia as team here at GDC. Their announcement is validation of the path we embarked on two years ago.

    Today we saw a big tech competitor enter the gaming market, and frame the necessary ingredients for success as Content, Community and Cloud. There were no big surprises in their announcement although I was impressed by their leveraging of YouTube, the use of Google Assistant and the new WiFi controller.

    But I want get back to us, there has been really good work to get us to the position where we are poised to compete for 2 billion gamers across the planet. Google went big today and we have a couple of months until E3 when we will go big.

    We have to stay agile and continue to build with our customer at the center. We have the content, community, cloud team and strategy, and as I’ve been saying for a while, it’s all about execution. This is even more true today.

    Energizing times.


    Permalink to story.

  2. seeprime

    seeprime TS Guru Posts: 381   +406

    With competition in the cloud gaming space, prices hopefully will be reasonable, at first. If they charge over $20 per month, growth will be slower than if they charge Netflix level rates.
  3. GeforcerFX

    GeforcerFX TS Evangelist Posts: 874   +372

    I think Microsoft is in the best position for cloud gaming, they serve with the console and (now) the PC market with traditional games and can take that experience to the cloud gaming market. Xcloud built into Xbox and windows will give them a lot of exposure. But they can still offer something Google can't, traditional download (or disc) local play for the markets where streaming will never be a thing for geographic reasons. Sony can do the same but with less exposure.
    Digitalzone and Teko03 like this.
  4. Teko03

    Teko03 TS Evangelist Posts: 575   +297

    Phil Spencer, Satya Nadella & Panos Panay have been great for Microsoft. Excited to see what Project xCloud will offer...I'm just hoping they don't over sale and under deliver.
  5. roberthi

    roberthi TS Addict Posts: 406   +124

    1) Gamers don't want to subscribe...never did. Not saying they won't, but it's not what they want.
    2) They just want to be able to play anywhere without requiring an internet connection for EVERY game.
    3) There are a lot of gamers that play consoles and lots that do not. Not all gamers want to use a gamepad.
    4) Games usually outright suck these days. Who cares if it plays in 1000 FPS, if it's a crap game.

    As for my part, right now I have Steam and Origin. I have Steam ONLY because games sold in boxes over the years have forced me to log into Steam to play the game. Origin has some excusives that I like, but then I've started to regret bothering, since I don't want to log into YET ANOTHER SERVICE! Gog.com has the right idea by giving me the ability to buy games, have them in my library whereever I go, get rid of the DRM junk and even include older games I like to play that were actually good. Yes, I have to log into Gog.com to download the game, but once I have it, I can simply store it on a drive and play any time I like without a login. I won't buy games for UPlay or Epic or MS Store or Apple store, etc. It's ridiculous. I don't need or want yet another service. I NEVER want to play crap on a phone, a tablet or even a TV. That's why I have a PC at home. If I travel, playing on my Chromebook might be nice, but I won't use a stupid gamepad and who even cares when they couldn't even deliver on the promise that the Chromebook I bought would get ability to load and run Android apps? It's at that point that I realize that playing games when I travel is neither fun nor worth the hassle. I don't care if these things actually work now. I want no part of it.
    Last edited: Mar 20, 2019
    Jim Grove and psycros like this.
  6. LunaticChef

    LunaticChef TS Rookie

    Cloud gaming is all fine and good, but what hardware will be needed on the gamer end? What kind of Internet connection? I assume it will have to have unlimited data transfer as well. 4k gaming is great but you will still need a large 4k display to benefit from it.
  7. NahNood

    NahNood TS Addict Posts: 120   +63

    Well, going by the testing of Google's service, they stated minimum 20-25 Mbps internet connection, but not sure about the upload part (mine is 250 down and 12 up and it worked beautifully with their Assassin's Creed Odyssey testing). And yes, surely you'd want an unlimited data transfer plan if plan to game a lot that way. As for 4K, they only had 1080p streaming. And what hardware? Practically anything that can display a video is good enough!
  8. lexster

    lexster TS Maniac Posts: 447   +218

    Cloud gaming? No thank you. Hard pass.
  9. Jim Grove

    Jim Grove TS Rookie

    Another candidate for the Google Graveyard. To many moonshots get thrown out when there is no chance to dominate. Gamers commit and then get buried?! No Thanks, Goog.
    Beakerman likes this.

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