Xbox Live app released for iOS

iOS Xbox App

This will either please you or make you extremely upset that you'd enjoy smashing up an iDevice without a second thought, but Microsoft has released an Xbox Live app for iOS (available for free). The app will allow users to keep track of their Xbox Live account and check out what their friends are up to. To be honest, it's a smart move. It shows Microsoft is not attempting to create a monopoly with Windows, but allow other platforms to have some kind of connectivity with the software giant's product line and services. Sure, Apple fans will now have an app that will allow them to perform tasks that we can accomplish on our Windows Phones, but can they play Xbox Live titles? No. Do they have integration with the OS? No. Do they have as many features as we do altogether? Certainly not.

Features include:

  • Read and send messages to friends
  • Manage your friends list, invite new friends
  • Read and Edit your full LIVE profile (name, bio, motto)
  • Change your avatar features/items with the avatar closet
  • View and compare your achievement progress with friends

Should iOS users want the full experience, they can come to Windows Phone, but should they be avid Xbox gamers, then there's no harm in Microsoft allowing them to use the service while on the go (but with limits of course). An interesting feature is beacons, which will alert friends that you wish them to join you on an activity. Don't forget that we have the Xbox Companion app in our arsenal too. Even on my iPad 2, Metro UI looks sweet. You can download the free app from the App Store.

Source: Major Nelson, thanks to everyone who tipped us!


Reader comments

Xbox Live app released for iOS


They shouldn't have done this until the companion app was matured and we had something to really say was exclusive to WP7. Sure we have the companion app, but honestly, it failed to impress anyone I know that had an Iphone. The thing that does impress my Iphone friends is the Hub integration where I can see who is online with beacons and compare achievements and so forth.
And thats gone now...
Do you think Apple would ever release Facetime to other OS's, or Imessage, ICloud? No, because those features make people switch to Iphones.

Strange, the youtube video of the Companion app has a lot of "Why isn't this available for Android/iOS" I don't think people would switch to or from WP7 for this app. It's just a way to look at scores/acheivements...
I think the Companion app is a reason that someone who has a 360 and have been thinking about jumping the ship to WP7, would make the switch. 

I agree... this app is nothing more (actually less) then the website version you have access from any computer or smartphone now. It does look slick on my iPad though and will give people a glimpse of what they would get with all apps if they went with a WP7.5. So actually pretty smart of Microsoft!
I do see one thing they added on the iOS version that I don't see on the WP7 (Xbox Live app) and that is beacons. Is there a way to set beacons from a WP7? 

Um, this app has more functionality than the WP7. Just like all other bigger MS app, they're better on other platforms or not even available on their own (Skype, Photosynth)

Pretty bad move, in my opinion. WP7 should be perfected in every aspect before MS starts moving every feature to other OSs. Right, so that's Xbox LIVE, Bing, Skype, Photosynth, Office, Messenger, a dedicated OneNote app... What else do they want to share?

This is plain stupid. Maybe after Windows market share is >10%. But for now it looks like Microsoft does not want to be a major Phone OS player. Just a reason less for someone to switch to Windows Phone.

Makes sense considering how well estabilished WP7 is, with tons of exclusive features and units sold. Let's share our fortunes with the struggling operating systems, I bet Samsung, HTC and even Nokia are very happy to see MS killing the best selling points of WP7. [/ironic]
Seriously MS, we are still waiting for apps like Skype and PhotoSynth that are already available on others OSs, and now this?
Way to go MS

You guys realise that this is just a simplified APP version of the Xbox live website anybody has access to the site but it does make it appealing as long as the Companion app can do more we are good. We give iOS all our older stuff thats fine

The third screenshot shows how you can set up Beacons is there even a way to do it on our WP7? Unless there's an update to the Xbox App coming which would include it since it just got added in the new Dashboard update.

actually you can set a beacon in Xbox Comanion App.
Search the game you want to set beacon select the game from search result and the beacon function should be right there next to the game cover I just found out after played with this app for a while. I prefer this way because MS can easily add more function by update the app instead of waiting for major update.
To be honest Xbox Live Hub on Windows Phone is better than iOS which I agree with some people here that you can access through xbox.com on any platform.

So what exclusive features does WP7 still have over ios? Office, and thats rumored to be coming as well, so can anyone honestly say why a WP7 device would be better than an iphone in that situation? What ever happened to "First and best on Windows" that some MS exec said a while back?

We have Xbox Companion take full controll of your Xbox on our phones. Zune Pass and Zune Market (which I think should go to other platforms jsut to grow the brand) We have built in Office with Skydrive. Other applications will follow

There is way more to WP than just Xbox. The whole UI is different. The way the UI flows and the technology that goes into the UI. That is what will make someone come to WP. Everyone is missing the big picture here. This is like a gate way drug for IOS users. MS gives them a little love so they can taste what some of us obviously take for granted. Give a man a fish and he will eat 1 good meal. Give a man a seed and he will farm food to feed an army.

Whats next the full Companion App iOS too.
Are they gonna release this for BlAndroid too...?
Way to go Microsoft, Keep chipping away at your Edge.

Sweet, I have no problems with this. It should be on Android too. Same with the companion app! As long as I have it on my Windows Phone too!

Features we are missing on WP7 are beacons and the fact that the IOS version has been desinged to match the new xbox UI. It has a SOCIAL, HOME, tabs etc. We still have more features, however it looks like they needed to realse an update for ours to bring beacons and tie in the nex xbox UI. Would be cool seince we have Windows Phones.

yeah we need beacons lets all flood Joe's twitter account. Also dont forget we have game companions Halo Waypoint etc I dont think those are going to make its way to iOS but never say never :( They better NOT :@

Halo Atlas is a part of Halo Waypoit that shows live Maps while playing multiplayer, team mates, weapon locations, etc. in real time. It's prob going to come in an update to Halo Waypoint. When you load the app and are playing a live game it will recognize that game and have a notification that you pull down to launch the feature.

Also toast notifications for xbox live messages. Ability for the app to show us on xbox live on our phones or something would be nice. Filp tile would be cool showing a current message or if you have a beacon set it would flip and reveal you have X amount of friends playing whtever game you have a beacon set to. I don't know call me greedy, but it could be so sweet. Also can't listen to voice message sent via xbox live as well.

Maybe this is all going to be updated for Tango remember WP Xbox Live was released and designed earlier this year and the new website was shown not to long ago. I am going to assume MS is going to rehaul Xbox Live when Tango releases with all the good features and companion built in.

I dont know why people are getting upset over this, anyone could have easily went to xbox.com and logged in and sent/received messages to their friends from there as well, this is just an app version of that.  Sure they can edit their avatar - but who cares how often do you really even do that?
For those saying MS is giving away all their exclusives; exclusives dont determine how WP7 performs - the OS is very fast and fluid, easy to understand and use and has all of this integrated into it.  Other platforms may have these features too as 'apps' but they arent integrated.  You can play games on other platforms but you cant earn achievements while playing those games; that wont ever go to another platform.
WP7 is about how great the platform works, not which apps are exclusive or not, the reality is many of IOS apps that were once exclusive are no longer the case; angry birds, doodle jump, iheartradio, tons of apps on each platform. 
Sure Apple wouldnt release facetime on WP7 but they are really shooting themselves in the foot with that; it will never become widespread in its use if they just stick to mac and iphone users.  Even now with that market its not used that often.  Whereas something like skype is commonplace and the must have app.  Once the WP7 version is available it should be the best version out there.
It's really all about integration and how seamless it works with the OS, all other smartphones may have the basic funtionality but it isnt as well integrated as it is in WP7.

Short term thinking.  Nokia is coming out strong with the Lumia line and will have millions of phones sold in the US come first quarter 2012.  Everyone keeps saying they want the Microsoft of old - well the Microsoft of old is all about 'embrace, extend, extinguish'.  You can't do that until you place your software on other platforms, become the standard and then let people see where the best experience is really at - on a MS operating system; all other os's have outdated or not as good features compartively.

Apple is shooting itself in the foot by not releasing FaceTime to Windows Phone but Microsoft isn't shooting Windows Phone in the foot by releasing Xbox Live features on IOS? 

I really think MS should have kept this exclusive to WP until it gained greater market share. I'm truly afraid my beloved platform is just not respected by MS enough with this move. I mean they release it the same day as WP too. The IOS release will probaly make the news with no mention of WP. I'm disappointed.

To tell you the truth Xbox Live is a horrible selling point for Windows Phones anyway. Here is an example a user switches from iOS to Xbox Live expecting crazier games on Xbox Live then becomes dissapointed therefore WP experience = NOT GOOD. Its all about experience if you want this phone to sell the word of mouth has to be good to build that hype around it.
Right now iOS is the best mobile (smartphone) gaming platform way better than Xbox Live but with this app it allows MS to build a better community so they expect even more Live users which equals more money into live which means more budgets and those budgets are spent on Xbox live games and features which we would probably see first.
Xbox live is just a little meh add on right now but its only getting better with the waypoints and companions.
MS just applified the web interface so iPhone users can use it

You completely missed my point. My point was timing reread what I said. It should have been exclusive until WP gained marketshare and not released the same day. Where did I say MS shouldn't have released it to IOS at all?

whoops my bad if I did but im just quickly getting my point accross. I agree they should of waited a little bit but at this point I rather not have Microsoft sell WP because of Xbox Live because Xbox Live will attract the gamer audience and when the gamer audience finds out that they dont have GTA 3 or Infinity Blade etc they will be VERY dissapointed with this platform.
when MS annouced that they are re-designing the Xbox Live website I know for a fact they are releasing a mobile APP for iOS and Android. The APP has basic feature set I dont think MS is going to invest their time with it thats probably the first and last version iOS users are going to see while we see more content added to ours in the future.
its a good move to expand the xbox live marketplace I kind of wish they did the same thing for Zune but like you said wait until the marketshare picks up a little bit.
IMO they should of released it the same day now you have average Joe without an Xbox and just found out about the slick new dashboard. Average Joe has an iPhone so it might increase sales for December Xbox and Live sales.

It's a way to get Metro design on the iPhone. They are trying to get people to notice the new Microsoft any way they can.

Saturation. Microsoft is losing mindshare and needs to get it back. That's what I see this as doing. People that own an Xbox might not even be aware of Windows Phone. When they finally do they can put it all together and have a more favorable opinion of Microsoft, which will then hopefully turn into sales.

FYI you can set up Beacons on the Companion app. Search the game you want to setp up then just above the description you have "set up or update beacon".
The annoyance is that you have to be connected on your console for the app to work so basically you can't do it away from home unless you just leave the console on all the time (which no one does).
That aside, I can see why Microsoft would do that but I think it's terrible timing as WP is just starting to get momentum. Xbox Live is supposed to be an essential feature to the OS so offering it elsewhere isn't smart, at least not when your marketshare is still ridiculous.

Maybe if I could take screenshots on my phone I'd be happier about this, but right now that gives iOS the advantage and it sucks.  Thanks, MS, for taking away something we had exclusive to WP7.

I don't think it's a big deal what MSFT is doing. You can look at it both ways very easily. The app really isn't a killer one. At the same time, it does introduce non-WP7 users to the Metro interface like someone mentioned and makes them consider a WP7 more seriously. The thing that MSFT needs to get on top of is more quality apps.

I fucking give up! Windows Phone needs every advantage it can get, and they go and make this available for iOS??? Microsoft is kiiling their mobile OS. I've been a champion for WP7, but I just give up. 

They should have waited. Let the platform grow a little bit more before giving away exclusives. WP uses its exclusive features to have an edge and to create awareness. Look at all of the commercials that Nokia did about their Lumia line. They always emphasize those exclusive features. I am not against iOS having it but they really should have waited.

that's a valid point short-term. I guess MSFT could've waited a few months after the holiday smartphone shopping levels out as a business decision.  I tried the companion...it's okay, again not a killer app....yet. It'd be really sweet to turn on the Xbox from this app :)

While I was shocked to hear this, I don;t think it makes a difference of any kind to the success for WP. At the end of the day, its gonna be the availability of huge apps (at least to the average consumer) that are already available on Android and iOS that will help or hurt WP and give people that extra push to jump OS'

Guys check this link out.


In the article, they don´t mention WP7 that much as if it´s an ios app. This is messed up!!!. Microsoft should have charged them! They are even saying that downloading the app on ipad would be great for people who don´t have a chat pad attached to their Xbox controllers... Really, I think MS should have released the ios version later and made them pay something like $1.99 or $0.99.