Monday, 30 July 2012

LG U+ Launched C-games Cloud Gaming Service in South Korea Powered by Ubitus and NVIDIA Geforce GRID

LG U+, a leading telecommunications operator in South Korea, launched a cloud gaming service named C-games in South Korea. C-games is powered by Ubitus GameCloud solutions and NVIDIA's Geforce GRID cloud gaming technology.

LG U+ calls C-games a N-screen cloud gaming service because LG U+ subscribers can enjoy a hassle-free cloud gaming experience with their smartphones, tablets, connected TVs, STBs or PCs anytime, anywhere over the cloud. LG U+ plans to make C-games available on Smart TVs by September this year. The platform will also be compatible with the Google Chrome browser next year, expanding beyond Windows and Internet Explorer. C-games will also be accessible on HTML5 cross-platform mobile applications.

The LG U+ nationwide Long Term Evolution networks have made it possible to establish the download-free and installation-free infrastructure for users to play cloud-based streaming games that have high-definition resolution and carry a large amount of data. The company will make the platform open-source so that customers of SK Telecom and KT, South Korea’s two biggest mobile carriers, can also play the games next year.

Partnered with leading game studios and OEMs around the world, Ubitus GameCloud enables LG U+ to deliver on-demand gaming services to consumers on the devices/screens they prefer. To bring more games to the C-games service, Ubitus also announced a Game Development Kit (GDK) for cloud gaming in a LG U+ business seminar which allows developers to convert their PC games into cloud-ready games within a few button clicks.

“Ubitus is incredibly proud to bring a instant-play cloud gaming service and a GDK to Korea. It has always been our mission to support game developers to deliver on-demand gaming to everyone, everywhere,” said Wesley Kuo, CEO of Ubitus, “Other than mobile devices and PCs, we will further extend the service to connected TVs and STBs later this year, as an integral part of the living room entertainment system. LG U+ users can enjoy seamless gaming experiences no matter they are relaxing at home or on-the-road.”

“LG U+’s superior LTE network, together with Ubitus’ innovative game cloud technology, unleashes powerful new entertainment possibilities for gaming enthusiasts in Korea,” said Byung-Wook Chun, SVP and Head of Service Platform BU of LG U+, “We care passionately about delivering the best content and most premium experiences possible for our valued customers; more exciting announcements about the cloud gaming service are soon to be released. We are excited to be working with Ubitus on such properties.”

“KGDA has been a leading organization representing tens of thousands of game developers in Korea”, said Seung-Hun Lee, President of Korea Game Developers Association (KGDA), “we are excited about the cloud opportunity for our game developers and publishers. We will work closely with Ubitus to support our members to best leverage the power of cloud to develop more attractive contents for the Korean gamers.”

Looking through the C-games games library, OnLive's games library feels outright crowded with high quality games. First there are not many games yet and the most notable games are Super Street Fighter IV: Arcade Edition, RollerCoaster Tycoon 3, King's Bounty: The Legend, Ghostbusters: The Video Game and Dark Void. LG U+ has enabled virtual touch controls for Super Street Fighter IV: Arcade Edition and other games, for instance the OnLive version of Super Street Fighter IV: Arcade Edition doesn't have virtual touch controls. Looks like C-games has at least some support from Capcom and Atari, but they have a long way to go to build up a competitive games library. Working with both domestic and foreign game developers, LG U+ plans to release up to 100 titles by the end of the year.

This marks the first time for a South Korean company to venture into the cloud-based content business that aims to provide a new way to play games and replace traditional game consoles such as the PlayStation and the Xbox, LG U+ officials said. Just recently South Korean cable TV operator CJ HelloVision and cloud gaming company Playcast announced a partnership to bring cloud gaming to CJ HelloVision customers. Since South Korea has one of the best internet infrastructures in the world it's no wonder that cloud gaming competition between South Korean telecom companies is heating up.

Seeing as how the various cloud gaming services springing up around the world use NVIDIA's Geforce GRID cloud gaming technology, NVIDIA must feel pretty happy and proud for their foresight to go with guns blazing into cloud gaming so early in the game.

SOURCES: The Korea Herald, The Korea Times.

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