The latest Alpha update for Xbox One and Series consoles updates the Microsoft Edge browser to the more recent version based on Google’s Chromium, and players have already found a way to run Stadia.
Back in 2019, Microsoft relaunched its Edge browser, basing it on the work done by Google and other contributors to the Chromium open source project. Eventually, this move gave Windows 10 users a more compatible, stable, and frequently updated browser by default, versus the previous Edge, which used Microsoft’s own EdgeHTML browser engine.
As reported by The Verge, the latest Alpha Skip-Ahead build — an invitation-only preview of an update — for Xbox One and Series consoles are receiving the same Chromium-based Edge browser as seen on Windows, with a bit of improvements for browsing from a controller. For now, there’s no support for a full keyboard and mouse, leaving the Xbox controller to serve those purposes.
Beyond the standard benefits of using a Chromium-based browser, like improved compatibility with web apps, game streaming fans have already begun to dream of the possibilities of the new Edge on a gaming console. In fact, one Stadia fan, @billetviolet, managed to get into the Xbox Alpha Skip-Ahead and was able to play Cyberpunk 2077 in the new Chromium-based Edge.
Between the video itself and a larger discussion happening on the Stadia subreddit, we learn that you’ll need a Stadia Controller to play, as the connected Xbox Controller is serving as the keyboard and mouse for Chromium-based Edge rather than as a gamepad. That said, some reports indicate you need to actually disconnect the Xbox Controller for the Stadia Controller to be properly recognized as “player 1.”
Given the current requirement of a Wi-Fi-enabled controller, it seems only Stadia and Luna will be supported by Edge on Xbox in the short term, though Luna may need to lift some of its stricter device limitations first. Services like Xbox Game Pass’s xCloud streaming — which is set to get a web app soon — and GeForce Now that use your device’s controller will need to wait for Microsoft to tweak Edge to allow your Xbox controller to be properly used as a controller.
To sign up for the Alpha Skip-Ahead update, you’ll need to enroll in the Xbox Insiders Update Preview program and hope you’re sent an invitation to join the test. Otherwise, since this isn’t a preview of the “next” update for Xbox consoles, but instead a “future” update, it will be a few weeks, if not months, before the update to Chromium-based Edge arrives. As Verge notes, Microsoft is dropping support for the older version of Edge on Windows as of tomorrow, so hopefully it won’t be long before Xbox is brought up to date.
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