With Stadia, Google wants to bank on Cloud technology!
Stadia offers a new approach and experience for players, new opportunities for developers as well as an opportunity for a breakthrough in terms of the business model against direct competition determined not to let it happen. Finally, it provides new opportunities based on synergies with one or other of its companies. It is a form of “Uberisation” of video games at all levels.
No need to buy a console
Google’s first innovation: the dedicated console that creates the game’s rendering on site is over. The Cloud virtualizes the console, based on a home-made processor offering 10 teraflops of graphics performance (Xbox offers 6 teraflops), and developed with AMD during the Google Project Stream that we had been talking about for several months.
With Stadia, you can play games on any device: a PC, an Android smartphone, a game console, a television with Chromecast, a tablet, etc. Google also showed a new controller that will be offered at a probably low price, able to work with any device. It will be connected directly to the house’s WiFi and will come with a microphone.
Bandwidth, latency and 5G
One of the primary targets of these cloud games will probably be smartphone players, the most widely used device in the world and the one that attracts enormous amounts of advertising. Indeed, while the two critical criteria for games in the Cloud are bandwidth and latency, 5G is shaping up by the beginning of next year by praising its two strong points, bandwidth and latency.
This approach will create a considerable traffic surplus that could quickly saturate many telecom operators’ networks, especially since in many countries, 5G will also be used in Fixed Wireless mode to replace fiber at home. It is therefore entirely possible that operators will invent new business models to make this latency and additional bandwidth requirement pay more. Telephone operators are fighting against the GAFAM, which they regularly accuse of taking advantage of the infrastructure paid for by them. Net neutrality may suffer as a result.
Amazon probably won’t stay on the sidelines.
Already well-established in video streaming with Amazon Prime, and which also hosts its main competitor Netflix on AWS, Amazon will probably not be left out in this race. Several sources noted that Amazon had begun recruiting specialized engineers and video game developers to work on “previously unseen” games.
Google is undoubtedly also well placed with about twenty Datacenters in the most populated places on the planet. While nothing of Stadia’s operational status is yet known, the contenders are now addressing developers with tremolos in their voices, explaining that their platforms are the ones that will allow them to become rich and famous. It is still hard to believe given the few elements we have on the key points, but we shouldn’t miss the next E3 from June 11 to 13 in Los Angeles.