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Xbox app for smart TVs ‘in the next 12 months’

Microsoft will introduce an Xbox app for smart TVs within the next year, Xbox boss Phil Spencer has said.

In an interview with The Verge, Spencer said that “I think you’re going to see that in the next 12 months,” when asked about the potential of an Xbox app for TVs, adding that “I don’t think anything is going to stop us from doing that.”

The comments are a slight change of tact from the head of gaming and Xbox at Microsoft, who last month suggested that the company could launch a low-cost streaming stick comparable to those offered by Amazon and Google.

Whether it is via an app or a dedicated streaming device, Microsoft is looking to increase the accessibility of its xCloud game streaming platform which is currently in beta and only available on Android devices.

The company is in the process of rolling out an app for iOS, but it – like Google and Amazon – has faced roadblocks from Apple over adding a game streaming app to the App Store.

Spencer said that the development of xCloud will not adversely impact its game hardware business, and instead said that he envisions a more hybrid future. Comparing the streaming platform to Google Stadia and Amazon Luna, Spencer said: “I think what it needs to evolve to are games that actually run between a hybrid environment of the cloud and the local compute capability.”