I feel for the manager who had to get the budget for xCloud signed off.
I can only imagine the answers to the chief financial officer's questions. How much money will it make? Not entirely sure. What's the business model? We're still working that out. What games will people play on it? Pass. Surely you know who the audience is? *shrugs*.
Yet streaming has been signed off, and some of the biggest companies in games are racing to find the answers to those questions. Xbox launched its streaming service in the UK, US and South Korea just over a month ago in a 'Preview' state, featuring just four games.
"It's really important to us that we're very open about what we're doing every step of the way," says general manager of Project xCloud Catherine Gluckstein. "We have Reddit threads open with our community. We kicked off Preview in three countries for very particular reasons. The US and UK are obviously mature Xbox markets, but we wanted to look at what it took to extend gameplay. And then South Korea is a market leader in telcos. We're partnering there with SK Telecom to really look at the possibilities of 5G and also the potential of a market which isn't a traditional console market but a very big PC gaming market.