Xbox Live is primarily used in Microsoft’s consoles and Windows or Windows Phone games for achievements, friend lists, and game matchmaking. While Microsoft has experimented with achievements on iOS and Android recently, the company is planning to push Xbox Live cross-platform in a big way soon. Sources familiar with Microsoft’s plans tell The Verge that Microsoft is building a platform to extend Xbox Live functionality to iOS and Android games. Some details of these plans were first revealed in a recent Microsoft job posting.
Microsoft wants to win back game developers
"We will create a modern framework that is open-source, lightweight, extensible and scalable across various platforms including Windows Store, Windows Phone, iOS, and Android," reads the job listing. Microsoft is aiming to "win back" game developers from its competitors by making Xbox Live a lot easier to integrate into apps and games. Xbox Live, in its current state, requires certification and permission from Microsoft, but in the future the company is planning to have fewer restrictions and better tools for game developers to integrate the functionality into titles.
We understand Microsoft wants Xbox Live across every platform, with simple and lightweight tools to allow developers to bring their games to Xbox Live whether they run on Windows, iOS, or Android. Microsoft is currently hiring developers to help build the new platform. While Google already has its own Google Play Games service and Apple uses Game Center for similar purposes, Microsoft will position Xbox Live as an alternative for players to use to earn achievements, find friends, and possibly do some cross-platform gaming.