Microsoft executives talk about expanding game services, game accessibility, inclusivity, and first-party releases

Microsoft’s Chief Marketing Officer, Chris Capossela, and Chief Xbox Platform Officer, Mike Nichols, spoke at the Microsoft E3 conference today, and they talked a bit about what Microsoft’s doing and where they’re going, as well as what they’ve been doing as well.

On Tuesday, Microsoft held its annual shareholders meeting, during which time the company gave updates on its efforts to expand its Xbox Live and Windows Game Studios businesses. The company also addressed topics such as game accessibility, inclusivity, and first-party releases.

On the latest episode of The Game Dev Show, senior executives from Microsoft talked about expanding their game services for gamers, along with the company’s commitment to making its machine learning and cloud platform available to all developers.

word-image-8593 If the statements are to be believed, Microsoft executives have big plans for the entire gaming world. The company held a briefing prior to this year’s E3 with a number of gaming executives, all of whom talked about grand strategies to expand Microsoft’s reach in the gaming market, including exclusive titles like Starfield. First, Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella said that Microsoft is fully committed to the games business, aiming to play a leading role in democratizing games and shaping the future of interactive entertainment on a large scale. The plan actually consists of three points: Leadership in cloud gaming, increasing the value of Xbox Game Pass and a focus on developer empowerment. For the first question, Liz Hamren, vice president of gaming experience, talked about plans to roll out Microsoft’s xCloud and Game Pass services to more countries and more devices. These include developing its own streaming feature, launching game streaming in the Edge, Chrome and Safari browsers in the coming weeks, expanding Xbox Game Pass Ultimate to Australia, Brazil, Mexico and Japan later this year, and expanding Game Pass subscription offerings to provide different services for different countries and budgets. This external growth of Microsoft’s gaming services was supported by Tim Stewart, CFO of Microsoft, who stated that the company needs to expand [its] audience beyond consoles into new demographics and geographies that it hasn’t reached yet, and provide meaningful value to those audiences so that they choose to spend their money with us. Work is also underway to expand accessibility, develop developer guidelines, and work with underrepresented communities and groups. Finally, Matt Booty, head of Xbox Game Studios, admits that Microsoft doesn’t release many first-person games, but that’s about to change. We want to get to the point where we release a new game every quarter, Booty says. We know that a successful entertainment service requires a constant and exciting flow of new content. Our portfolio will therefore grow as our services evolve. For those who prefer not to go through all the links to sources for details, Xbox Wire has effectively summarized the company’s goals, as well as shared several statistics about Game Pass that should be of interest to industry analysts. Sources: Xbox Wire (1, 2, (1, 2) ViewMicrosoft’s new CEO, Satya Nadella, has been busy creating a plan for the future of the company, and he spent some time discussing how he wants to see Microsoft’s business evolve in his first-ever Reddit AMA. The CEO was candid in his responses, explaining his excitement at seeing Microsoft’s game platform evolve and expanding into new markets, while at the same time admitting that “the execution of our past strategy has not been good enough.”. Read more about the last of us remastered accessibility and let us know what you think.

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Greg Baskerville
Greg Baskerville
Gaming Blogger & Musician. Playing games since the Amiga days in the 1980's, and a handy guitarist.

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