Microsoft will test xCloud gaming over 5G in Korea

Microsoft partnered with SK Telecom to provide 5G + xCloud game streaming services in Korea. The software giant plans to launch a public preview of Project xCloud next month, and SK Telecom is currently the “proprietary operating partner” of Microsoft cloud gaming services. 5G is a natural fit for services like xCloud, and when mmWave launches a worldwide network, you'll need to make a promise of reduced latency that will benefit cloud gaming services.

Some SK Telecom customers can try out next month's xCloud game streaming on both LTE and 5G networks. Microsoft is currently focusing on testing a phone-based version of xCloud in October, but hasn't released an accurate preview plan yet. Microsoft was able to elaborate more xCloud efforts at the Surface hardware event on October 2 in New York City.

Microsoft's partnership here is interesting and may imply future xCloud-only carrier monopolies. Microsoft wants to optimize data centers, networks and entire services across various networks. Partnering with a particular carrier will allow the carrier to get another way to attract customers from its competitors. It's surprising that Microsoft has an exclusive deal with AT & T or Verizon in the US, but it definitely makes sense for companies in markets like Korea.

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