PlayStation 5 getting Xbox Game Pass is not as ludicrous as it sounds

Microsoft exec reveals company is open to adding Xbox Game Pass to PlayStation and Nintendo consoles

Sony PlayStation 5 close-up of console and DualSense controller
(Image credit: Getty Images / NurPhoto / Contributor)

The chief financial officer of Xbox has revealed that the gaming giant would be willing to expand its Xbox Game Pass service to rival consoles, including those from PlayStation and Nintendo.

Speaking during the Wells Fargo TMT Summit, Tim Stuart told attendees that it is his company's "mission" to bring the service to "every screen that can play a game", and that includes non-Xbox consoles.

He also suggested that the Activision-Blizzard buyout was fuelled by such thinking. He said (via VGC), "For us, when we think about the business, gaming as it relates to Microsoft and with Activision, operating leverage and margin expansion is definitely a piece of that puzzle."

And, while not announcing anything specific, he added that it is Xbox's goal to "bring our first-party experiences, our subscription services to every screen that can play a game.

"That means Smart TVs, that means mobile devices, that means what we would have thought of as competitors in the past, like PlayStation and Nintendo."

It's quite a bold statement, but Xbox has already set the groundwork for such a move. It has added PC Game Pass games to Nvidia's GeForce Now cloud platform – a rival to its own Xbox Cloud Gaming service.

Of course, both Sony and Nintendo have a say in this and it seems highly unlikely that they would agree to carry a significant rival's main moneyspinner.

Maybe though it also signals an intention by Xbox to move away from its own hardware in future – to become a service-only company and games publisher. In that case, future Nintendo and PlayStation consoles could be happy to include an Xbox Game Pass style portal, albeit one that doesn't conflict with their own game sales.

What's more likely is that there will be an Xbox Game Pass app on every connected TV and streaming device, to tempt non-console owners to subscribe and play via the cloud.

That's pretty much what Phil Spencer exclaimed a couple of years ago. It certainly makes the most sense. After all, as he said himself at the time (again via VGC): "Other competitive platforms aren’t really that interested in having a full Xbox experience on their hardware."

Rik Henderson
News Editor

Rik is T3’s news editor, which means he looks after the news team and the up-to-the-minute coverage of all the hottest gadgets and products you’ll definitely want to read about. And, with more than 35 years of experience in tech and entertainment journalism, including editing and writing for numerous websites, magazines, and newspapers, he’s always got an eye on the next big thing.

Rik also has extensive knowledge of AV, TV streaming and smart home kit, plus just about everything to do with games since the late 80s. Prior to T3, he spent 13 years at Pocket-lint heading up its news team, and was a TV producer and presenter on such shows as Channel 4's GamesMaster, plus Sky's Games World, Game Over, and Virtual World of Sport.