Microsoft’s Xbox has been one of the dominant gaming platforms for a long time now, but times are changing and a lot of focus is shifting to cloud-based platforms. With just a few months to go until launching its next Xbox, Microsoft’s Phil Spencer has said he views Google Stadia and Amazon as the company’s “main” competition.

In an interview with Protocol (via Neowin), Phil Spencer made it clear that he thinks cloud streaming is going to be a huge deal for the future of gaming. Spencer went as far as to say that Microsoft views platforms such as Google Stadia as the real competition to Xbox, dismissing traditional console makers such as Sony and Nintendo.

Spencer says this because, frankly, Sony and Nintendo have expressed little interest in streaming and also don’t have the resources to get into that game easily. Google and Amazon, on the other hand, compete with Microsoft directly in this area. Just like Microsoft has invested heavily in its Azure cloud service over the years, Google and Amazon have invested in theirs and it opens the door for both companies to compete when it comes to game streaming.

When you talk about Nintendo and Sony, we have a ton of respect for them, but we see Amazon and Google as the main competitors going forward (…). That’s not to disrespect Nintendo and Sony, but the traditional gaming companies are somewhat out of position. I guess they could try to re-create Azure, but we’ve invested tens of billions of dollars in cloud over the years.

Further, Spencer said Microsoft was open to working with Sony and Nintendo on “format wars” while “Amazon and Google are focusing on how to get gaming to 7 billion people around the world.”

In that same Protocol piece, Google’s Phil Harrison is quoted regarding Stadia Base, the free tier of the service which, as Harrison says, is “the big strategic difference” for the platform.

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Ben Schoon

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