Saturday, 26 May 2012

Has Gaikai Partnered with Sony on Cloud Gaming or is it a PR Stunt?


French Gameblog.fr posted this, "Gaikai has major announcements in store for E3, which have the potential to change the future of video games, game consoles and how we play." They have been invited to a presentation of Gaikai at E3, where this potential future of video games, game consoles and how we play will be unveiled.

I reported on the rumor that VG247 spread, that Sony will supposedly be announcing a cloud gaming deal with either OnLive or Gaikai at Sony's pre-E3 press conference on June 4. With this post from French Gameblog.fr it now looks like as though Gaikai will get the cloud gaming deal with Sony.

On the VG247 rumorGaikai's response was this, "There are always rumors about companies, and cloud companies, teaming up with console makers. Sorry we can't be of more help. If you hear of anything more, could you let us know?" This response could mean that Gaikai doesn't know anything about such a deal and it's indeed OnLive that will partner with Sony. But, of course it could also be a diversion tactic, a very simple one.

This cloud gaming deal with Sony could come at a perfect time for Gaikai, as they have just recently partnered with NVIDIA and will upgrade their data centers with the new NVIDIA Geforce GRID cloud gaming technology. This deal could also be a strong sign for NVIDIA's cloud gaming efforts, as they have been cut out of next-gen consoles by AMD, and this deal with Sony could mean that at least on Sony's side there will be no next-gen console, hardware wise, but only a Sony cloud streaming box.

During a panel at CES earlier this year titled The State of the Games Industry: Consoles Are In Trouble, Nanea Reeves, chief product officer for Gaikai, said, "Not all of the current console makers will have one more generation. That will be the big news at E3." Does she know more than her words tell? Combined with this info about Gaikai partnering with Sony on cloud gaming, could this mean that Sony will have no next-gen console and only use cloud gaming on their current PlayStation hardware and will even introduce a little streaming box like the OnLive Game SystemSony could also directly use their cloud gaming service powered by Gaikai to embed it in their Smart TVs, Blu-ray players, tablets and smartphones. Combined with Sony's first-party game exclusives this could be a powerful console in the clouds.

Of course this invitation by Gaikai and the 'coincidental' leak of it could also be a diversion, and their announcements at E3 will be of a different nature. With their current problems, does Sony even have the balls to do large scale cloud gaming which ain't come cheap? Of course this could only be a smaller thing for the beginning, like cloud gaming demos from Gaikai, which are Gaikai's current business model. If this is a diversion, this could mean that Sony partnered with OnLive, and even that Gaikai partnered with Microsoft, or vice versa. And what's with Nintendo? Rumors over rumors, and nothing but speculation. We'll know the truth soon enough at E3, or not, which would be depressing for all the E3 expectations.

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