We’ve been hearing rumors for a few months now about major players in the gaming space moving to a cloud streaming model. In the last week a newcomer to triple-A gaming, Google unveiled a beta test program for its service known at this time a project stream. A few days later Microsoft announced they are testing their cloud service known at this time as Project X Cloud, Nintendo is now cloud streaming 1 Nintendo Switch game in the Japanese market, and Sony has been streaming games for years already.
I’ll start with Big G (Google) there have been rumors floating around for a few months that Google was building a gaming console or something to compete with the big 3 console manufacturers. This week we didn’t get a chance to glace at gaming specific hardware because Google said we already likely own something that we game on. Googles approach is pretty much any device with the Chrome browser, Chromebooks, Laptop, Mobile phones, and tablets should all work great. The catch you need 25MBps which is about what you’re rated to get from most bottom tier internet packages. Notice I said rated to get, to have a positive experience you’re going to likely want the next tier up in internet packages. Again this is good news as most people have speeds higher than 25MBps already anyway.
If your thinking that this sounds a bit crazy, it’s not once you realize that hundreds of thousands of people across the world play online multiplayer games on there phone using wifi and 4g daily. Download PubG mobile, Fortnite or Arena of Valor and you’ll be treated to a near triple-A gaming experience with nearly no or no lag at all.
Sidenote: Fortnite on a mobile device can be played cross-platform with PC, Nintendo Switch, Xbox, and now even PlayStation, yes folks the future of gaming is here.
Microsoft is taking the same approach that Google is using its network of servers station around the globe. The idea is very much the same as Googles, the game is installed and rendered on a server with a graphics card that’s likely MUCH! better than the graphics card in average tablet, cell phone or off the shelf PC from best buy. The video stream is then sent to the device you’re playing on, your button inputs are sent back to the server, the server then sends the video back to you with said inputs. You are literally gaming the exact same way that you would if you were sitting on the couch at home, the only difference is the PC could be hundreds of miles away.
The thought process from Microsoft is that most people again have a Windows PC or easy access to one. Again gaming on hardware you likely already have. Imagine how many more customers they would have if they didn’t need specialized hardware… That’s forward thinking.