EA and Microsoft Plan New Cloud-Based Video Game Streaming Services


Publisher Electronic Arts (EA) and Microsoft (MFST) are both working towards bringing their catalog of video games to a cloud-based platform.

EA CEO Andrew Wilson stated during Saturday’s E3 press conference that the combination of streaming plus subscription has been the greatest disruption to the consumption of gaming entertainment within the last five years. Given how feasible accessing media has been for consumers, Wilson predicts that this distraction will have a profound impact on the games industry within the next few years.

Their upcoming cloud-based service isn’t prime for the market yet but has been running as a demo on the show floor of E3. The games featured on the platform are streaming in full HD from a cloud being utilized on various devices, according to Variety.

This news emerges less than a month following EA’s announcement regarding their acquisition of cloud-gaming technology assets and personnel from subsidiary GameFly.

EA aims to grant users access to play top-tier games like Titanfall 2 on any device. According to reports by users from CNET who tried out the platform, prospective users may expect to play games anywhere they would be able to watch Netflix. EA is utilizing technology similar to that which powers Netflix for this platform, which is why high-end games may be played on low-end laptops or even phones.

All that users will need for this service includes internet connection, a controller, and any device. Although EA hasn’t specified costs, they are estimating that a release will come within the near future.

Microsoft also announced plans to launch a game streaming service on Sunday, which would allow users to select a game online and play it immediately without the need to buy a disc or download the title. This is similar to¬†Sony’s PlayStation Now that is available to gamers for $19.99 a month.

Responding to the announcement, Harding-Rolls, head of games research at IHS Markit, believes that while the streaming service is likely years away from launch, Microsoft’s positioning in cloud computing should help the company stay highly competitive.

“A number of publishers are showing renewed interest in cloud gaming and subscription business models. As the market shifts, Microsoft is strongly positioned due to its Azure capability.”

Microsoft capped off its big day of announcements by unveiling a number of exclusive games such as Halo Infinite, Forza Horizon 4 and Gears 5.

Yves Guillemot, the head of Ubisoft, recently told Variety that the end of dedicated video game consoles is coming to an end, with one more console generation being projected to follow, as streaming takes the lead in innovation.

More: FULL EA PLAY E3 2018 Press Conference
Referenced: Microsoft is building a game streaming service and new Xbox consoles
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