Earlier today, Microsoft announced a new cross-platform mobile software development kit (SDK) for game developers to build Xbox Live functionality into their mobile games. That means you’ll eventually see things like Xbox Live achievements, Gamerscore, clubs, and more on updated and new Android and iOS games.
With the SDK, game developers can pick and choose which Xbox Live features make it to their mobile games. Regardless of which features game developers pick, the features will be enabled through a single sign-in to a Microsoft account.
We’ve already seen a few mobile games include Xbox Live functionality, such as the Halo mobile games and Minecraft. The difference is that only Microsoft had access to the tools necessary to build Xbox Live into mobile games.
Microsoft didn’t say if we will also see Xbox Live on the Nintendo Switch and PlayStation 4, though a previous report pegged Switch support. Microsoft also didn’t say when it would release the SDK.
On a related note, Microsoft also announced Game Stack, the company’s new initiative that puts its tools, services, and platforms under one umbrella. Game Stack includes Azure PlayFab, DirectX, Havok, Azure, Mixer, Power BI, Simplygon, Visual Studio, Visual Studio App Center, Windows, Xbox Game Studios, and Xbox Live.
PlayFab is a notable inclusion, seeing how Microsoft acquired the service in 2018 and enables multiplayer servers for games with matchmaking, voice chat, and more.
The new SDK and Game Stack are likely part of Microsoft’s push to make Xbox games and services more accessible across platforms. Also playing a role is Project xCloud, Microsoft’s game streaming service that will launch in beta this year. Microsoft showed off xCloud for the first time during its recent Inside Xbox episode.
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