The highs of cloud gaming

Videogames are moving further into the Internet cloud with new devices and services unveiled at the big Consumer Electronics Show this week.

One major step came from computer graphics giant and chipmaker Nvidia, which announced agreements with six cloud gaming companies to deliver games to global broadband companies.

This will allow gamers to play on any screen — including smart TVs, PCs, tablets and smartphones.

“By using the Nvidia Grid platform, our partners will allow gamers to play anywhere, anytime, without being tethered to a box,” said Phil Eisler, general manager of cloud gaming at NVIDIA.

“The world’s most exciting games can now be played as easily as you can stream a movie, right onto your TV or mobile device. No more discs to shuffle or files to download and install. Just click and play.”

The platform can serve more HD-quality game streams with improved speeds, according to Nvidia.

Initial partners include US-based Agawi, China’s Cloud Union and Cyber Cloud Technologies, Japan’s G-cluster Global, Playcast Media Systems of Israel and Ubitus of Taiwan.

Ubitus meanwhile unveiled a separate agreement to bringing console and multiplayer games to Google TV.

“Google TV is an ideal platform for cloud gaming and we have tackled the obstacles to achieving low latency streaming game experience with multi gaming controller devices support on Google TV,” said Wesley Kuo, chief executive of Ubitus.

“This brings tremendous benefits to consumers, particularly with the increasing adoption of Smart TVs and new generation of set-top boxes in every consumer’s home.”

The move to cloud gaming poses challenges to the traditional model of console games where users purchase a specific product.

Despite the shift, new consoles are being introduced including the latest Nintendo Wii, and upgraded versions of Microsoft’s Xbox and Sony’s PS3 are on the horizon.

According to Forrester Research, some 66 million US households will access the Internet via game consoles, Blu-ray players, or connected HDTVs by 2017. Forrester’s Jitender Miglani said consoles are still playing a role but one that is changing in gaming.

“Unlike in the past, when the introduction of a new console generally saw significant uptake in sales, Nintendo’s Wii U (launched in the fourth quarter 2012) is not expected to hit the peak sales of the original Wii,” he said.

“We believe that this trend will be seen more broadly in the game console industry. This is largely (though not exclusively) driven by the availability of low-cost/’freemium’ titles on smartphones and tablets, which fulfill the gaming needs of the casual gamer and have a negative impact on the console market.”

Source: SAPA

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  • Also, with the high latencies we are seeing here, it will make much more sense to just buy hardware and save on bandwidth, then you can play Call of Duty Whatever. No sense in trying to shoot someone if it is going to take a few seconds to see the result. I hear Diablo 3 was a mess.

  • Neji

    Well… their “real” market are countries that have proper infrastructure with regards to communications… and we have… what we have.

  • ArchieChoke

    hence my post…The problem with proper infrastrutures is that they set how the world should work, despite 3-world factors…I guess this is 3rd world issues.

  • “adding vast advantages for the medium”
    Okay not really sure what advantages there are for me personally. I prefer to own my games…install them on my laptop that I take with me to remote places without my trusty ADSL connection so that I can play offline when I want to. Even on my desktop with my wired connection I’d really prefer to bypass the silly online platform altogether to gain access to my preferred games (which are almost always essentially single player only games). Disadvantages on the other hand…well I can think of many there:
    – Company X decides it will no longer keep the servers for Game Y online. Wanna play it again? Sorry for you.
    – Constant internet connection required (a.k.a Always Online). Feel like playing from your secret hideout 20,000 leagues under the sea? Sorry for you.

    – Internet a little laggy today? Perhaps a cable was chewed on by a shark or something? Maybe you just ran out of bandwidth? Sorry for you.
    – Little sister playing Barbie – Extreme makeover 9 online and eating all the bandwidth with that new wardrobe being downloaded while you want to just get into your single player campaign of Jimmy Eats Noobs 19 : Powered Hunger? Sorry for you.
    – New game Z3419T…6 was all dandy but now they’ve…naaa I can’t anymore lol.

    Anyway I don’t like it – companies obviously do so in the end of the day it’ll mean I just need to stick to the classics if everyone heads the “cloud” way.

The highs of cloud gaming

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