Will Cloud Gaming Replace Hardware Consoles?
The Cloud is the digital storage unit of the future. Despite the powers of our phones and computers, our devices aren’t able to store all of the things we need them to, and the Cloud can provide this as well as a way to run remote servers. This could change a lot of things in our world. Everything from composite avatars of people to high speed internet, the video game industry is planning on optimizing their products by using the Cloud.
For years, since Sega, Nintendo, and the first PlayStation, console gaming has been the standard for the industry. It has been the primary method to play video games, consoles are more popular than PC gaming and other methods of playing video games, but this generation of consoles might be the last. There are many predictions for the future that consider access to streaming on Cloud-based servers. It will become much more common for gamers, making it unnecessary for gamers to buy the hardware that you’ve needed previously.
This shift to streaming-focused gaming may seem far away, with the PlayStation 5 and the Xbox 2 right around the corner, Cloud-based servers will change everything for players. Streaming services are already running and have their niches.
There doesn’t seem to be a rush to put an end gaming hardware altogether, but the market will move towards gaming that doesn’t require the players to purchase expensive hardware units. According to Akamai, the average broadband speed in the US increased dramatically in ten years. From 3.6 Mbps in 2007, they went over 18 Mbps at the beginning of 2017. In ten more years there could be another increase in the average bandwidth if gigabit connections become more popular.
With Cloud gaming, any screen with an Internet connection can run these large file games. Game play will change, though. Gaming companies have to make sure that their games are accessible to players on any device. It will make gaming easier for people when they want to try a new game. You will be able to buy new video games from wherever you are start playing immediately. There will be no need for a large piece of hardware.
Gaming companies will also create more streaming services that customers pay for in order to play any of the manufacturer’s games. The biggest games will stream from the internet to any device—computers, smart TVs, tablets, and mobile phones. While tech giants like Microsoft and Google are trying to get into the market with Xbox from the former, they are making its games exclusive on their streaming services.
According to the website MoneyPug, which is known for being a platform to find mobile phone deals, the mobile gaming market is the largest in the industry. The market was valued at over $68 billion in 2018. Most of this, around $55 billion to be exact, comes from gaming on smartphones. A smaller fraction from tablets, $13.6 billion. Of course there are many predictions for the next few years. One is that mobile gaming will keep growing and browser-based games will shrink. Meanwhile the sale of consoles is expected to remain fairly steady despite the transition.
Global Video Game Market
With the transition to Cloud-based gaming, the industry is set to grow. The market will go from $152 billion in 2019 to $178 billion in 2021 and $196 billion by 2022. These increases are significant but they aren’t solely due to the switch from consoles to streaming and Cloud gaming though it is without a doubt a factor. The majority of this revenue comes from Apple products. Still, according to forecasts, Android will beat out the iPhone before the year 2023. Most of game-related revenue comes from in-app purchases, which will undoubtedly increase as Cloud-based games become the norm.
However you look at it, streaming in the industry will increase and the revenue will continue go up. VR gaming will become much more accessible, and this will also grow the market. Gaming isn’t the only thing that moving to the Cloud will provide. It will increase the technological ability in much of our society, opening up many opportunities in just about every area of our lives. Gaming is the main use of both augmented and virtual reality. As gaming becomes easier and more accessible, technology will evolve with it.
Garon Cockrell is the Founder and Editor of Pop Culture Beast and host of The Pop Culture Beast Show. He founded the site over seven years ago to have a place on the internet to write about the things he loved. Since then, Garon has become a best-selling author (Demonic and Other Tales), an award winning screenwriter (Best Screenplay 2013 Motor City Nightmares Film Festival), and a cast member on the top rated podcast, Never Not Funny.