Microsoft’s new Xbox mobile game store launches in July.

Microsoft has been talking about its plans for an Xbox mobile game store for a few years now, and now it has announced that it will launch in July. Speaking at the Bloomberg Technology Summit earlier today, Xbox President Sarah Bond revealed the launch date and how Microsoft will circumvent Apple’s strict App Store rules.

“The Xbox mobile store will have games like Candy Crush and games like Minecraft. We’ll start on the web because that way we can make the experience accessible on any device, in any country, regardless of the closed ecosystem store policy.

Bond was talking about the game and the actual store in an interview at the Bloomberg Tech Summit, but the description given to The Verge paints a slightly different picture.” This year, we’re launching our first mobile service where mobile gamers can find deals on their favorite in-game items and discover new games. This web-based store is the first step towards building a trusted app store rooted in games.

The store will focus on first-party mobile games from various Microsoft studios, including blockbusters like Call of Duty Mobile and Candy Crush Saga. According to Bond, this will be expanded to include partners in the future.

While games will be part of the store, it seems that an important part of the Xbox experience will also be available. Bond argues that there is no such thing as a “truly cross-device” “gaming platform and store experience”. So who you are, your library, your identity, your rewards will move with you rather than being tied to a single ecosystem”. Microsoft is trying to build on this with the Xbox mobile store.

Microsoft has also been building this store in anticipation of companies like Apple and Google being forced to open mobile app stores, but the software giant clearly doesn’t want to wait for the Digital Markets Act in Europe or potential measures in the US to take shape.

Launching a successful web-only mobile store will be a challenge, and it’s not immediately clear how Microsoft will position it as an alternative to the mobile games already available in rival app stores. Bond hinted that Microsoft could ‘extend’ the web and launch a real competitor to Google and Apple’s mobile app stores in the near future.

Microsoft first hinted at a ‘next generation store’ in early 2022, just a month after announcing its acquisition of Activision Blizzard. In an interview with the Financial Times last year, Phil Spencer, CEO of Microsoft’s games division, said: “We want to be in a position where Xbox, our content and our third-party partners’ content is available on any screen that someone wants to play on. We want to be able to do that.” “Right now we can’t do that on mobile, but we see a world coming where those devices will open up.

What do you think?

Written by Sean Anderson

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