Saturday, 18 February 2012

OnLive Community Manager Matt Jensen's Thursday 2/16/2012 Livecast

This time OnLive MJ had a special guest, OnLive UK general manager Bruce Grove.

OnLive MJ Announcements:
- As it's Thursday its too early to announce games etc.
- This Weekend - President's Day Sale (US) - Half-Term Sale (UK).
- OnLive MJ livecasts will be on Tuesdays 2pm PST from now on.
- Going to check into Space Channel 5 Part 2 control problems.
- Dreamcast collection contest on friday (watch OnLive on Twitter for details).
- OnLive wants to let us to choose something for them to do on, a website to allow people to offer things for $5. Again watch OnLive Twitter or Facebook for details.
- Previous OnLive MJ livecasts are on OnLive's YouTube channel and recorded on the OnLive MJ USTREAM livecast page.
- OnLive still working with Apple on OnLive for iOS.

Stay tuned for next week's livecast from OnLive community manager Matt Jensen, scheduled for Tuesday 2pm PST.

What OnLive UK general manager Bruce Grove had to say:

Bruce is head of OnLive in the UK. Keeps ops going, talks to publishers and stuff, makes everything better for everyone in the UK.

UK embraced OnLive becuase they were in a good position with what they had to offer, with a much better offering of games and feature wise than the OnLive US launch. In a much better shape etc. UK is a denser population too, easier to get the  message out. They have huge publisher support and huge backing. Press, everyone was great.

BT is a UK partner, that has gone really well. BT is an investor in OnLive so the support was there from day 1. OnLive keeps working with BT and building that partnership, Bruce talks to them a few times a week. Other UK ISPs have been involved in making sure that the OnLive experience is good for their customers. UK underrates just how good their broadband is too, it's allowing OnLive to make sure everyone gets a great experience.

OnLive UK launch went really well. What about other countries? We're still a growing start up. We haven't been live for 2 years as a company yet, so we're still young and growing our opportunity where we are and looking at opportunities in regions that make sense. It's just about when we're ready and more activity will come later this year.

OnLive Desktop in the UK: When we went live in the US with OnLive Desktop, we talked about the Pro and Enterprise versions. The US is about ironing out the service and once it's done, it'll come over to the UK. Very, very soon, really not that far away.

OnLive UK Twitter feed: There has been some talk about this but mostly the information is the same. There are some sale differences and such, but that's based on publisher choice. MJ is looking into it, perhaps if he was cloned.

Bruce has a twitter feed of BrooseG and that is also his OnLive player tag:

Bruce's favourite game is Assassin's Creed: Revelations at the moment. He's enjoyed the series and finds it very immersive.

With regards to non US/UK customers wanting to use the service: While you can demo from other countries. The restriction is down to billing addresses in the UK. This is a legal thing.

UK Office: Plans to build up a UK office, not going to mirror US, going to have appropriate skills. The UK is different and a different market. It's definitely something that Bruce is working on.

OnLive on Google TV is not (currently) a UK thing, currently soft launched in the US on a few devices. Google have been working with TV manufactures on intergrating it into TVs rather than more set top boxes. Sony, LG, Samsung and such are on board with the Google TV plan and of course OnLive is on board with Google TV and we should see this in the UK soon.

Bruce works with the local publishers and local market, over the next few months there will be some more UK style games.

Bruce has been with OnLive 4.5 years, was in the US as employee #20. He came to the UK in November 2011. He ran the OnLive engineering team and then went managerial.

The name OnLive came from thinking what the technology was and did, and OnLive felt like a good name for everything. It connected, you're part of it and you're interacting with it right at that time. Hence OnLive. It's an umbrella name for the tech and everything they can spin out of it.

What's different between OnLive US and UK: Different market/audience. Lots of cross over, lots of similar desires. Subtle differences around marketing, title desire (NBA 2K12/MLB 2K11 vs. PES 2012). Again, we will see more of the UK audience style content.

Couple of games not on OnLive UK, this is due to publisher restraints. Still working with those publishers to sort that where possible. People need to know that games sometimes have different publishers in different countries. Disney is large!

OnLive live chat support in more UK hours... OnLiveNate: Nothing to announce on that. We are actually looking at ways to provide longer hours.

US/UK title prices vary due to Sale Tax versus lack of VAT, then you add on exchange rate fluctuations. They've tried to get a fair pricing scheme sorted.

Can I launch OnLive from the OnLive Desktop App: Currently no, we are moving towards the Pro and Enterprise level with new features and stuff, for right now no. They've also talked about how they want to be recognised that they are using the tech for different purposes and would like to show business focus side vs. games focus side and aren't going to try and force them to overlap.

UK gets/got different sales. $5 fridays never came to the UK (they don't have dollars!!) £3.50 Fridays doesn't sound right!. They wanted to move to more general sales than the $5 Fridays. OnLive UK launch had good deals! We're looking at what the right thing to do is for each market. For instance President's Day sales vs. Half-Term sales and it's a case of managing those deals and territories differently.

We are building this up in the UK. The market and audience are important and you're going to see great stuff. It's still early days as we're less than 2 years old! Bruce is loving it. Cross region play is nice!

Any way for non US and UK countries to pay for the service and play games? - OnLive is not officially live in other countries. You need a billing address in the countries that OnLive is live in. They have to leave it that way due to legal and business issues.

Any plans to bring more targetted UK games (cricket, darts, etc)? - Yes, definitely. Bruce's job is to bring more content. Over the next few months we will see content added, that is geared towards UK users.

Where did the name OnLive come from? - OnLive seems like a good name for all of the different things that the technology can be... internet connected. You are on, and it's live. You interact with it at that time... Whether it is desktop features or games. The name OnLive was to be an umbrella for the technology and for all the different things that they can spin out of it.

OnLive UK general manager Bruce Grove will be at the GDC.

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