The idea of streaming games is picking up steam and all the big names are trying to get in on it. In a surprising twist, industry giants Microsoft and Sony will be teaming up.
It is so much of a surprise that not even the people working on the new PlayStation knew about it. Talks began last year and were handled by Sony’s senior management in Tokyo. Managers had to calm down the employees working at the PlayStation division and reassure them that this partnership will not impact the development of the next-gen console.
The partnership does sound like a good idea if you remember who and how numerous the competition is. EA is working on Project Atlas, Nvidia has GeForce Now, Valve is turning Steam Link into a personal cloud and then we have Google with Stadia and Amazon with their own service. Obviously, this is the route the industry is taking and it is going to be a tough fight for first place.
Considering the infrastructure both Google and Amazon have and the money they can throw at their new services, the partnership between Microsoft and Sony looks like a necessary move to stay on top.
We’re still years away from cloud gaming becomes the standard, but if Sony secures a spot on Azure early on, by the time cloud gaming does become mainstream they will have a well-built service ready for the influx of users. Most analysts agree that this is a good move by Sony, at least in the short-to-medium term.
In the long run, Microsoft might be the one who profits from this. When (and if) cloud gaming becomes the way to play games, they will have their largest competitor in their hands. It’s not very clear what exactly the terms of the partnership are, so time will tell who exactly is profiting the most from this.
A combined effort by them also has an interesting advantage, they could create a system similar enough that will allow developers to easily bring games to the cloud and physical consoles. This is one of the disadvantages of Stadia, developers will have to create a Linux compatible game.
Microsoft has also been getting friendly with Nintendo. Xbox Live and Cuphead came to the Switch and they’re working on promoting cross-platform play. We might see the big three team up to stay on top.
What are your thoughts, how long before cloud gaming becomes mainstream and who will come out on top?