12/07/2011 08:22 pm ET Updated Dec 08, 2011

My Xbox Live For iOS: Microsoft Releases Xbox App For iPhone

Microsoft surprised the tech world Wednesday when it released an Xbox app for a mobile operating system besides its own.

The My Xbox Live for iOS devices is out now, free and optimized for either iPhone/iPod Touch or iPad.

With My Xbox Live, Xbox gamers can manage and alter several facets of their accounts. From the iTunes app description:

Take your Xbox LIVE experience wherever you go with the My Xbox LIVE app. Track and compare your achievements, connect with your Xbox LIVE friends, and change up your 3D Avatar. Review all your recent great games you and your friends love to play and compare achievements with them. Jump into our games hub to learn about the latest LIVE games and apps. Access Xbox Spotlight feeds, get breaking news from Xbox LIVE, game tips and tricks, gamer spotlight and much more.

HuffPost Tech sister site Engadget notes that the iOS app isn't quite as meaty as its Windows Phone counterpart. Users with WP7 can search and download games, movies and music on their Windows Phone devices, among other rewards for going all-Microsoft, but the iOS app does carry with it a decidedly Mango-ish look. From the screen captures below, you can see that the My Xbox Live app retains the Metro design elements and typefaces familiar to Windows Phone users. (And this isn't the first time Metro has snuck onto a rival OS device. In late November, Microsoft announced a new mobile website where iOS and Android device users could try out the Windows Phone interface on their own smartphones).

The Xbox team over at Microsoft has been busy this month. The Netflix app for Xbox Live was updated with an improved user interface, and the ability to control your Xbox 360 using your Windows Phone was recently added in the Windows Marketplace. The big news, of course, was the huge Xbox software update, which enables futuristic Kinect voice control of your machine and tacks on live television and several new channels; that update is rolling out as we speak after a few minor delays.

The latest news, however, is the Xbox Live's crossover move; below, check out screenshots of that new OS-hopping My Xbox Live app for the iPhone. If you've got an Xbox Live account, go ahead and download it with this link in the iTunes store (get on Wi-Fi first: It's 17MB) and, if you've got a Windows Phone, pick up the Xbox companion in the Windows Marketplace (here).

My Xbox Live App For iPhone, iPod Touch and iPad