Researchers suggest consoles may become a thing of the past as gaming goes cloud based but are they calling this out too early?
The claim came from chief product officer of video game market research firm EEDAR, Geoffrey Zatkin, speaking at the Games Developer Conference in San Francisco this week.
What exactly will come next wasn’t divulged but the assertions from Zatkin echo earlier notions that the 8th gen consoles, currently comprising of PS4 Xbox One and Wii U may be the last. Tekken producer Katsuhiro Harada speaking last year predicted that a potential PlayStation 5 may be not much more than a controller and a screen as the focus of gaming shifts from dedicated hardware to online services.
The cloud is already becoming more prevalent in the 8th generation. Sony are pouring efforts into their PlayStation Now service, Xbox One’s Azure servers are taking the strain of running the AI in Titanfall and other parties such as OnLive seek to offer cloud gaming to compete with the consoles.
We feel the claims from EEDAR may be a little premature given that streaming HD games will at the moment require some heavy compression thus reducing the quality. The latest beefed-up hardware in 8th Gen consoles is leading games developers to bring out some graphically amazing and demanding games the likes of which the cloud will struggle to beat for now.
If cloud gaming does come to the forefront it may not be for some years yet. Can you see a future where there’d no longer be a demand for hardware consoles?