Over the weekend, games streaming service OnLive announced its closure. That came as a surprise. Not its closure, mind you – I think everyone expected OnLive to fail at some point. More surprising, to me at least, was the fact that they still existed. Also surprising? They’ve been bought up by Sony.
When the cloud-streaming service OnLive first debuted as a working product in 2012, I got to use it, and it actually worked. Of course, I was in California at the time – operating in a closed environment – and so were their servers. Of course it would work well under those circumstances – but they were future tech, built for an internet that was advanced of the stuff we’re using now.
I believe that streaming tech; beaming whole games in real time over the internet will happen, just not as well as it could be at the moment. Sony already has its PlayStation Now service, built from the remains of Gaikai. It works, provided you’re within close enough proximity to the servers. And with Sony gobbling up OnLive’s tech and patents, they’re cornering the market on game streaming. The only viable competition is Nvidia’s Grid – but it’s not a direct competitor.
It could mean that Sony’s future-proofing itself, or is betting that the next generation of consoles will utilise the “cloud” for game streaming. It’s something industry pundits have been predicting for a long time, and I think it’s something we’ll certainly see one day. I just hope that that day isn’t coming soon; I like have a machine that plays games without having to be permanently connected.
Last Updated: April 7, 2015