Microsoft's Project xCloud game streaming service will initially be powered by spare Xbox One S chips. But in 2021, the servers will get a big upgrade.
The new Project xCloud service is a big deal for Xbox. Gamers can wirelessly stream games to their consoles, PC, laptops, or phones without any downloads, all while keeping their entitlements, friends, and purchased content. But server power and latency is always a big concern. Luckily Microsoft has a plan to help smooth out those rough points.
According to The Verge's Tom Warren, who has a close ear to Microsoft's gaming plans, Project xCloud will get a huge upgrade in 2021. Microsoft will start putting in Xbox Series X motherboards into xCloud's server racks to belt out serious 4K gaming performance, complete with the powerful 7nm SoC with its 12TFLOP Navi RDNA 2 GPU, 8-core 3.8GHz, and 16GB of GDDR6 unified memory.
Popping in these new boards will significantly amp up the power, but we're curious if you'll have to pay extra for these servers. Maybe Microsoft will have different pricing tiers for Project xCloud streaming performance: A lower-cost price for the Xbox One S-powered servers, and the Xbox Series X-powered servers could cost more but also enable higher-end gaming.
This boost to next-gen power isn't a surprise, though. Microsoft already confirmed this back in 2019. We just didn't know when the upgrade would happen.
"We designed Scarlett with the cloud in mind as well, and just as you're going to see our console product family evolve with that next generation, the cloud is going to evolve along with it," Microsoft cloud exec Kareem Choudhry said in a 2019 interview with Stevivor.
Microsoft should reveal lots more details at its planned showcase in July.
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