Startup seeks to stream video games to microconsoles

By Justin Mann on
OnLive Inc wants to change the face of online gaming, or at least how we perceive it. As opposed to the traditional model of people owning dedicated hardware that connects to remote servers, OnLive believes they can get away with thin-client computing for video games, allowing graphic-intensive titles to be streamed over an internet connection and played on any computer regardless of how powerful it is. Using proprietary compression techniques, the company also claims it can overcome things such as both bandwidth limitations and lag problems with ease.


OnLive's service will also be available for television sets through a purportedly low-priced “MicroConsole” a fraction the size of traditional consoles. It would be subscription-based, though there are not many details aside from that. They'll be launching the service this year, and apparently already have deals going with companies like EA, Take Two, Eidos and more.

They face a tremendous amount of obstacles to overcome, for sure. The Internet infrastructure worldwide certainly doesn’t yet seem capable of delivering what they expect it to and the fact that it will be a closed system will also set them back a bit – there's already a huge installed base of PC, Xbox 360, PlayStation 3 gamers and more that play online. Still, the concept itself is interesting. What's your take, could such a system be effective?

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