Microsoft Will Stream Xbox 360 Games to PC (Report)

Sony's PlayStation Now can stream last-gen games to current-gen consoles, so it was only a matter of time until Microsoft tried something similar. Right now, the Xbox manufacturer may be hard at work on a cloud technology that will stream Xbox 360 games right into Internet browsers, letting users play them on PCs.

Information comes from Neowin, a tech news site with a focus on Microsoft products. The site claims that sources inside Microsoft contacted it to explain this new technology, which builds on a theoretical cloud-based gaming service Microsoft discussed a few weeks ago. Streaming Xbox 360 games may stay in the Microsoft labs, but it stands an equally good chance of making it to the consumer market.

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The game-streaming service would work in a similar fashion to something like OnLive or PlayStation Now. Microsoft servers render the bulk of gameplay data, then stream the game with as little lag as possible to users' screens. In theory, this technology will work with any browser, not just Internet Explorer — and users could even stream Xbox 360 games to Xbox Ones or PS4s.

At present, it's probably best to take this information with a grain of salt, as the information comes only from one unnamed source at one Microsoft-centric news site. However, the idea that Microsoft would want to compete with PlayStation Now is entirely reasonable, and targeting Internet browsers rather than exclusive hardware (such as Sony TVs and game consoles) could give Microsoft's service a competitive edge.

If Microsoft chooses to pursue the project for the consumer market, expect to hear more about it in the relatively near future. If not, we hope you've hung onto your Xbox 360, because right now there's no other way to play that system's games.

Marshall Honorof is a Staff Writer for Tom's Guide. Contact him at mhonorof@tomsguide.com. Follow him @marshallhonorof and on Google+. Follow us @tomsguide, on Facebook and on Google+.