'Fortnite' is back on iOS for free via Xbox Cloud Gaming

Android and PC players also won't have to subscribe.

CHRIS DELMAS/AFP via Getty Images

NVIDIA isn't the only one making it easier to play Fortnite on Apple devices. Microsoft has partnered with Epic Games to make Fortnite playable for free on Xbox Cloud Gaming, no subscription required. So long as you have a Microsoft account in one of 26 streaming-enabled countries, you can play the battle royale title through the web browser on an iPhone, iPad, Android device or Windows PC.

The streaming version supports both controllers and touch. Creative mode is also free, although you'll need to pay if you want to fight AI villains in the Save the World campaign. Fortnite might not be alone, either. Microsoft said it would "look to bring" other free-to-play titles to Xbox Cloud Gaming.

There's no mystery behind Microsoft's team-up. This could boost Xbox Cloud Gaming and drive sign-ups for Game Pass Ultimate, which offers a catalog of games you can stream on multiple platforms. Microsoft is also eager to spite Apple — the Windows creator has backed Epic's antitrust battle, arguing that Apple is stifling competition through in-app payments and restrictions on cloud gaming apps. Free Fortnite gameplay could draw attention to Apple's policies while softening the blow for Microsoft, Epic and gamers.