The graveyard of cloud gaming devices is littered with tombstones. OnLive, rest in peace. Google’s own Nexus Q - it was nice knowing you. It doesn’t seem to deter other companies from trying though, and eventually one of them has to stick, surely? Google is rumoured to be ready to throw its hat into the ring once again with ‘Project Yeti’, a game streaming service that uses console hardware.
The console itself will allegedly be a subscription-based service using console hardware and controllers manufactured by Google. Yeti will work in a similar manner to PlayStation Now, Liquid Sky and other streaming services, beaming the games-on-demand through a network connection.
Up until now, the major barrier to cloud gaming’s success has been the quality of the connection. Most services just don’t cut it, and there’s noticeable input lag and artifacting even with fast net speeds. If any company’s best placed to negate these issues it’s Google.
For the end user, the benefits are obvious - all of the costs and complexities of up-to-date video game hardware are offloaded to Google. All game processing will be done in the cloud and then simply streamed to the console. Google Yeti would, therefore, be a very affordable entry-level gaming device which would have access to the Google Play store and its already huge library. If this combined with the top-end performance we expect from PC and console gaming it would make for a potent combination.
Further fuel has been added to the fire by Google’s recent hiring of Phil Harrison, who left his post as executive VP of PlayStation to join Google on an unannounced project. This would tie in very nicely with Yeti, and also raises the question of whether Google is planning to nab some exclusive games and content for the console.
Many have tried and failed at cloud gaming already, could Google be the one to succeed? Amazon’s Fire TV set-top box hasn’t made a huge impact on the gaming world, what could Google do to better the service? Let us know your thoughts!