That Windows Phone is integrated with Xbox LIVE and the larger Xbox universe has long been one of its selling points. However, it might be set to lose that edge in the coming months if a recent Microsoft job posting is read a certain way. We phrase it that delicately as we don’t want to get anyone’s hopes up too far.
That the Xbox franchise would want to take a bite out of the iOS and Android tree is hardly surprising, given its sheer market dominance. A recent job posting at the company had the following qualifications:
Two or more years’ experience in mobile application development
Experience of Windows Phone, iOS or Android development is a big plus
And described the position as thus:
Xbox LIVE Mobile team is looking for a passionate and experienced developer to join us brining Xbox LIVE entertainment experiences to various mobile platforms. As the team inside IEB (Interactive Entertainment Business) dedicated to mobile experiences, we work closely with console software team and Xbox LIVE services team to bring the latest and greatest gaming and entertainment experience to mobile platforms including Windows Phone, iOS and other mobile platforms. [bold: TNW]
That seems to directly imply that the Xbox LIVE experience is coming to a smartphone near you, regardless of its ilk (BlackBerry and Web OS users need not apply).
As you might expect, the Microsoft fans of the world are taking this as a slight, as a sign that Microsoft is somehow moving away from being ‘all-in’ with Windows Phone. Of course, that’s complete and utter bilge, but we hear the same tune every time any Microsoft plank walks to iOS; by now you have seen through it.
What might the timing on this be? That’s the million dollar question, and we are looking into it.