If you ask any PC gamer what features they covet from the console world, you’d be hard-pressed to come up with a long list. After all, features we’ve had for ages on the PC, like fast SSDs and high-resolution, high-refresh gaming, only recently arrived on consoles. However, consoles like the Xbox Series X/S have one feature PC gamers want—Xbox Quick Resume. A Microsoft executive says the company is considering bringing this feature to Windows, which would undoubtedly be a welcome addition. Sadly there is no indication this will happen any time soon, but it is surely tied to the recent arrival of DirectStorage.
Roanne Soanes, the head of Xbox hardware, was discussing the newly launched Asus ROG Ally and commented it’s making the company think about how PC gamers can quickly move from one device to another. As part of that process, she says people should be able to start a game on their PC, pause it, then grab the ROG Ally and immediately resume where they left off. She notes this feature already exists on Xbox with Quick Resume, and it’s thinking about ways to bring this feature to the Windows platform.
Quick Resume is currently only supported by the Xbox Series X/S consoles, as Sony doesn’t offer an equivalent. It lets you pause a game, then jump immediately into another game you previously played. It even works if the console has been turned off and allows storing up to three Xbox Series X/S games. This scenario is impossible on the PC despite all the available potent hardware. Sure, we can Alt-Tab to the desktop and keep a game suspended in the background, but we can’t switch to another game while doing so. Each game sucks up the entirety of our GPU’s resources on its own.
On the PC, the arrival of DirectStorage will certainly aid in this venture. Though it’s not supported in any games besides Forspoken, it can potentially deliver one-second loading times in future titles. However, the bigger question seems to be tied to the game downloading services such as Steam, Epic Game Store, etc. It would seem those would need to support it to allow you to jump from one device to another, and the same goes for Microsoft Game Pass on PC. That’s a splintered environment, though, with a half dozen game launchers competing for gamers’ attention.
Still, it’s an exciting proposition for those who pick up the ROG Ally or already own a Steam Deck. Handheld gaming has quickly become popular with PC gamers with an extensive Steam library. It’s possible Microsoft could be thinking about adding this as a feature for Windows 12, and maybe it has its own handheld in mind, given the popularity of recent handheld hardware.