Earlier this month, Microsoft announced Project xCloud which is the company’s attempt at launching a video game streaming service. The theory is that since all the computing and most of the hard work is done remotely on servers, this means that technically all games can be played on all sorts of devices, including mobile.
However while mobile games are popular, there are some games that benefit from hardware input, such as keyboards, mice, and game controllers. Microsoft is aware of that and according to a report from Windows Central, it looks like the company is working on prototypes of Xbox controllers that can be used together with mobile devices, such as smartphones and tablets.
This is based on a recently discovered research paper in which Microsoft seems to be toying around with the idea for a mobile controller. In fact Microsoft had gone as far as 3D printing samples. As Windows Central notes, this isn’t a new effort by Microsoft as apparently work on them was carried out back in 2014, but apparently the recent success of consoles like the Nintendo Switch might have prompted Microsoft to revisit their earlier efforts.
That being said, companies such as Microsoft do explore various ideas from time to time, so there’s no guarantee that what we’re seeing will become a reality. In the meantime for those who are looking for game controllers that can be used with their phones, there are plenty of third-party options out there, so if Microsoft were to enter the market with a mobile-specific controller, they’d have a lot of competition.