Back in September, Microsoft launched Project xCloud game streaming as part of Xbox Game Pass Ultimate. Project xCloud allows players to stream certain Xbox One games to their Android device, giving them a way to play console-quality games on mobile phone with no big downloads needed. It’s a nice perk for Game Pass Ultimate subscribers, to be sure, and apparently it works on more than just Android phones.
In a post to the Xbox One subreddit, Reddit user kiddj55 shared a brief video that showed Xbox game streaming working on the new Chromecast – the one that was just revealed yesterday. We don’t get to see any gameplay in the video kiddj55 posted to the subreddit, but the video does show him loading up Hotshot Racing and getting it to the title screen.
Over on Twitter, The Verge‘s Chris Welch confirmed that the Xbox Game Pass app and game streaming do indeed work on the new Chromecast. Welch even posted a Gears 5 video that served as a quick and dirty latency test – input lag is definitely noticeable in the video that Welch shared, but it’s important to remember that the Game Pass app isn’t officially supported on Chromecast, which by extension means that Xbox game streaming isn’t officially supported either.
Perhaps the issue of input lag will be sorted out when Microsoft decides to make an official Xbox Game Pass app for Chromecast, but for now, users might have to put up with some frustrating limitations if they’re going to try to play xCloud games through Google’s latest streaming device. Getting the app up and running means tracking down an Xbox Game Pass APK and then sideloading the app onto the Chromecast using another Android device like a phone or tablet, the Android Debugging Bridge, or another app.
If nothing else, this has exciting implications for the future. Xbox game streaming might be limited to Android phones for now, but Microsoft has said many times in the past that it want to roll out device-agnostic game streaming, which is the same thing Google is trying to do with Stadia. Stadia players already know how long they need to wait for official Google TV support, so here’s hoping that official support for Game Pass streaming isn’t too far off.