×
Cookies help us deliver our Services. By using our Services, you agree to our use of cookies. Learn More.

Xbox Exec clarifies Facebook Gaming on console

Microsoft shocked fans earlier this week with the announcement that it would be shuttering its streaming platform, Mixer. This surprise was compounded by the news that Mixer had been bought out by Facebook Gaming. The plan in the coming days is to usher content creators and subscribers alike over to Facebook Gaming. However, it appears that this won't be as limiting for Xbox owners as some may have feared.

In a recent exchange on Twitter, Xbox boss Phil Spencer was asked about the future of streaming from Xbox consoles. Streamer AngryJunglist asked, "With [Mixer] going away does [Xbox] have plans to incorporate an easy way to stream using other apps like twitch? And are you open to development of other streaming apps to give gamers options when using the console to stream?"

In response, Spencer wrote, "Yes, we absolutely want to give gamers choice of where to stream from Xbox."

This would suggest that the Xbox won't force gamers to have to stream through Facebook Gaming, regardless of the fact that Facebook and Microsoft just made a deal. This means that Xbox Series X gamers can probably look forward to streaming via other platforms like YouTube or Twitch.

This tweet from Spencer was referenced in the Xbox One subreddit, where people have begun trying to figure out its exact implications. These questions and concerns were fielded by Lawrence Hyrb, a Director of Programming for Xbox Live. Under his tag MajorNelson, he addressed Spencer's comments in more detail, assuring fans that Spencer meant precisely what he said.

He wrote, "we want anyone who has an Xbox to stream where they would like." 

However, he warned that there would be a bit of a transitional period as Mixer shuts down and moves services to Facebook Gaming. He explained, "Built-in broadcasting from Xbox One will be temporarily disabled in the transition after July 22 so we can build it into a more social experience for Xbox players. In the meantime, players can stream their gameplay from Xbox One using the Twitch app or by connecting to a PC and streaming via software such as OBS or XSplit."

In other words, things may be a bit wonky for a little while, but people don't need to worry about not being able to stream however they want. In fact, he told one fan that there were no plans to remove the dashboard integration built specifically for Mixer. When a fan asked about this, Hyrb explained, "If you are asking if the current Mixer integration in the dashboard is just going to become Facebook gaming. The answer is no."

In other words, there should be plenty of options available for Xbox gamers who want to stream their gameplay. However, with Mixer and the Facebook Gaming deal being in a state of flux, it's hard for gamers to see exactly what that future might look like. In the meantime, it seems like Microsoft is doing its level best to pressure customers that things will remain as normal as possible.

There's another thing that's interesting Hyrb's comments about not taking away things that gamers are already familiar with. This line of thinking is pretty much in line with other things we've heard regarding Microsoft's next console, the Xbox Series X. Earlier this month, it was reported that Microsoft has not drastically changed anything about the user interface or dashboard in the transition from Xbox One to Xbox Series X. While this is a smart idea that will likely help some gamers make the change from one console generation to the next, it did come as a disappointment for Xbox fans who don't enjoy the current interface of the Xbox One.

However, it appears as though making customers feel comfortable through a transitional period has become something of a recurring theme heading into the next console generation. The company also introduced Smart Delivery, a feature that allows gamers to update a cross-gen Xbox One game to Xbox Series X, free of charge. Pairing all of these directives designed to make customers more at ease with Spencer's comments reassuring people that it's okay if they don't buy an Xbox Series X immediately, it certainly seems like Xbox is approaching things from a rather relaxed perspective.

This seems to stand in stark contrast to many fans and streamers alike, who appear to be concerned about their gaming and streaming futures. Only time will tell how smooth the transition from Mixer to Facebook Gaming will be. In the meantime, it's reassuring to know that Xbox won't be limiting customers' choices too much.