Get ready for Xbox Cloud Gaming mouse and keyboard support (along with some latency enhancements)

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Microsoft is preparing to launch mouse and keyboard support for its xCloud game steaming service. It was reported back in March that mouse and keyboard support was at last going to be implemented, when head of the Microsoft Flight Simulator Project Jorg Neumann stated during a developer Q&A:

The next step for us is mouse [and] keyboard…This is platform-level support, so it has nothing to do with us. Obviously, mouse and keyboard works for our sim. So the platform team is working on this. I know I can’t give a date because it’s the platform team. I don’t know their dates, but it’s coming.

Once implemented, the feature will allow PC gamers using Xbox Cloud Gaming to play cloud streamed games with mouse and keyboard, or at least for those Xbox games which support it (Xbox is set to expand its xCloud game library sometime later this year).

Additionally, Microsoft is working on ways to help game developers improve latency, such as improvements to its Direct Capture tool. Morgan Brown, a software engineer on Xbox’s game streaming team, went into further detail in the video below explaining the latency improvements in store for Xbox Cloud Gaming.

He also confirmed what Neumann hinted at earlier this year, saying “Xbox has been supporting keyboard and mouse for a few years now, and we’re working on adding it to streaming for PC users. He added “But you can start adding it to your game right now and your console keyboard and mouse users will appreciate it. It will light up in streaming once we’ve finished adding it.”

These latency improvements along with the upcoming Xbox Cloud Gaming mouse and keyboard support, will help to make xCloud a much more viable gaming option for many PC gamers.