Microsoft’s xCloud service has since only been available to users in a closed beta and only on Android, but Windows 10 PCs are now being used to test the service internally.
A new report showcases what the service looks like on Windows 10 and discusses how it operates. Which from the sounds of things is not much different from how it functions on Android devices.
In fact the short of it is that the experience is apparently the same. Almost identical even. Which is good news for anyone that has been testing xCloud on their smartphone and wouldn’t mind testing it out on their PC at home.
Because it means the UI will be familiar and using it will be a breeze.
xCloud on Windows 10 PCs will have a dedicated app
A big part of the reason things will feel familiar is because the Windows version will have its own dedicated app.
It’ll also reportedly looks just like the Android app’s UI, so navigating around your list of games and such won’t take any extra work. Not that it would be much effort to learn a slightly different design in this case, but it’s certainly more convenient if things are the same.
The idea behind cloud gaming is immediate gratification, after all. And learning a slightly different or re-organized UI doesn’t really play into that as well.
The internal preview is limited to 720p
While streaming xCloud on your Android device allows for 1080p resolution, that isn’t the case for Windows testing.
The internal preview test only supports 720p streams. Which isn’t necessarily the best for bigger displays that come with desktops and laptops compared to smartphones. Microsoft does state that 1080p streaming is “just around the corner” though.
And that likely means that 1080p will be available before it even reaches the external testing phase. Just like with the Android version of the preview, the Windows 10 version requires a Bluetooth gamepad connection.
The report only mentions the Xbox One Wireless controller, but it’s likely more Bluetooth controllers that work with Windows will work this preview too. At least once it reaches users outside of Microsoft.
The Android version supports multiple gamepad choices, so it would be weird for Microsoft to limit this to its own gamepad on PC.
When it comes to games, the Windows preview should have the same library of offerings as Android. It’s noted that Microsoft employees have a “variety of games to test,” but it isn’t mentioned explicitly how many there are or if any of them are different from the Android list.