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Don’t expect Xbox Game Pass for Switch or PlayStation 4 anytime soon

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In an interview with German gaming publication Gamestar, Head of Xbox Phil Spencer put a hefty dampener for anyone who was still holding out hope that the company’s awesome Game Pass service would come to competing platforms. The silver lining here is that they themselves aren’t opposed to it, however.

Ever since Phil Spencer took over the reins of the Xbox division, the company started to shift its strategy when it comes to traditional platform ideology. Unlike Sony and Nintendo, team Xbox has opened up to an unprecedented extent by venturing out to other platforms.

The PC platform in particular has garnered the most attention since it is not a closed ecosystem, to begin with. But right from the start, the big question was whether Xbox would do deals with Sony and Nintendo by bringing their titles onto their rival systems.

Rumors that the Xbox Game Pass subscription was headed for the Nintendo Switch surfaced last year and for a brief period, it looked very plausible. But it looks like things have changed since then with Phil Spencer crushing hopes for Switch and PlayStation owners who would like to see the incredible value offered by Xbox Game Pass on their gaming systems.

The thing about other gaming console platforms is we’re not able to bring a full Xbox experience on those platforms.

In places where we have, like mobile phones like we’re doing now with xCloud coming to Xbox Game Pass Ultimate […] What we’ve done with PC in bringing our full Xbox experience there. Because we know when somebody is playing one of our Xbox games there is an expectation that “I’ve got my Xbox LIVE community, I have my achievements, Game Pass is an option for me, my first-party library is there”.

And the other competitive platforms aren’t really that interested in having a full Xbox experience on their hardware. But for us, we want to be where gamers want to be and that’s the path that we’re on.

Spencer states that opening up to every platform has been their long-term goal but their rivals apparently aren’t showing the same kind of interest. And unless Sony and Nintendo are onboard, there’s literally no way Xbox Game Pass can be available there.

In the age where services are more important than ever, the lines between platforms are blurring like never before. Maybe Xbox’s rivals have their own plans when it comes to game subscriptions and don’t want to undercut their ambitions. Or maybe they aren’t interested in giving Microsoft the opportunity to profit from gamers in their own ecosystems. Whatever the reasons may be, it sure looks like next-gen is going to be an industry-defining period.



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