As Microsoft reinvents itself for the "mobile first, cloud first" world, services are going to play a key role. They already do now, of course, and the company is pushing Office 365, OneDrive, Skype, and Xbox Live as cornerstones of its vision for the future. But there are other services to come, and one of those may well be "Arcadia", a code name uncovered by Mary Jo Foley related to a new "streaming" team within the OS Group at Microsoft, the ones responsible for Windows, Windows Phone, OneDrive, and more.
Microsoft has a number of problems that could be solved by a service that could stream games and apps to Windows devices. Allowing Xbox One and Xbox 360 game owners to play against each other might be one, and another might be a way to get Android games and apps running on Windows powered devices, without the overhead of an Android emulator. Running Android from a Windows device (such as a Windows Phone 10 powered smartphone) isn't as easy as it might seem, and the idea of streaming Android apps is apparently tabled, at least for now, according to Foley's sources. Microsoft hasn't given up on the idea of getting Android apps onto Windows devices, however, as the "app gap" remains Windows Phone's biggest stumbling block in competing in the mobile space.
While the company continues to work on new services, including the "Arcadia" streaming service, Mary Jo doesn't believe we'll be seeing it at January's Consumer Preview event, or anytime soon for that matter. That Microsoft is still in the hiring process seems to bear that out, but the notion of being able to stream games and/or apps to your Windows devices looks to be on the way.