Much to the surprise of the gaming world, including many internal PlayStation developers, Sony and Microsoft announced a dual partnership last week regarding streaming and cloud gaming. The two chief rivals put aside their differences for a little while to collaborate on joint development of future cloud solutions in Microsoft Azure. Based on the latest rumor, the partnerships don't appear to end with Sony.
According to David Gibson, a industry insider, it appears that Microsoft and Nintendo are also teaming up to use Azure tech to support Nintendo's upcoming streaming service. The Tweet also mentions that Nintendo intends to offer the service in limited markets as well. Considering that Microsoft Azure is a proven technology when it comes to streaming, it's clear that Sony and Nintendo decided to go with the sure thing rather than take the risk on the other option with Amazon AWS.
As many fans already know, this wouldn't be the first time that Nintendo and Microsoft have joined forces. It began last year on social media, as both companies took the opportunity to poke fun at Sony and its (at the time) unrelenting cross-play stance regarding Fortnite. Nintendo UK even later put out a trailer for Minecraft cross-play in which one player is clearly playing on an Xbox while the other is on a Switch.
But also Nintendo itself is looking also to work with MSFT (Azure) to offer its own streaming service in limited regions (JP, US etc).— David Gibson (@gibbogame) May 17, 2019
However, the two companies have been more collaborative than ever over the past year. The most obvious development was that games like Cuphead and Hellblade: Senua's Sacrifice were being ported over to the Switch, joining Minecraft. Rumors even indicate that Microsoft could be bringing Xbox Live services to the Nintendo Switch, allowing players to sign in and even earn achievements for supported games.
Whatever the case, it's possible that fans get a glimpse at Microsoft's plans for Project xCloud, a service that aims to be a Netflix of games for Xbox players, next month at E3 2019. With these partnerships now popping up, it's more than possible that gaming fans could be seeing this technology spread to their platform of choice in the next few years.