Microsoft does not rule out expanding the Xbox Game Pass with the PS5 and Nintendo Switch. But would Sony get involved?
Microsoft is investing billions in buying studios. The goal is less to support the Xbox consoles. Rather, the Xbox Game Pass should be expanded and attract more subscribers so that it becomes profitable.
For Microsoft, it doesn’t seem to matter much on which platform the players use the Xbox Game Pass. It’s available on Xbox consoles, PC, and Android phones too. More systems are likely to follow in the months and years to come.
Ultimately, Microsoft no longer competes mainly with Sony and Nintendo, but with other providers such as Google Stadia, and Amazon Luna the company wants to address the mass market and not limit itself to its own consoles.
“I think for us it’s all about priority, and reaching more players. So we went to PC first after Xbox, because there’s just so many players there, globally, that don’t own an Xbox, that we could go reach. We went to mobile next because there’s a billion Android phones on the planet. It’s significantly larger than any console player base,” says Microsoft’s Phil Spencer, who also wants to provide iOS devices with the Xbox Game Pass.
The PS4 has been shipped more than 110 million times in the past few years. The Switch is also very popular. The availability of the Xbox Game Pass offer on Sony and Nintendo systems should be a lucrative business for Microsoft. In fact, Spencer does not rule out expanding availability accordingly.
“I love the Switch, I love PlayStation, honestly, I think they’ve done an amazing job as being a part of this industry. I’m not sure that those are the next big set of users for us, but we could be open to those discussions,” said Spencer.
It is difficult to imagine that third-party games, which would find their way to the PS5 without an Xbox Game Pass, will be offered on the PlayStation hardware via the Redmond-based subscription offer. After all, Sony has a similar service with PlayStation Now that could be expanded.
However, it is unclear whether the expected seal off would also apply to Microsoft’s first-party games, which after the takeover of Bethesda include brands such as DOOM and The Elder Scrolls.