Wednesday, 1 August 2012

Ubitus will Help Build a Cloud Gaming Service for China Telecom

Looks like Taipei, Taiwan based cloud gaming company Ubitus is on a roll in the far east, as not only are they powering the recently launched South Korean C-games cloud gaming service by LG U+, now they have also partnered with China Telecom. Together they intend to build the world's largest cloud gaming kingdom in China. Their first action will be to deliver cloud gaming on internet connected TVs in China. The cloud gaming service is expected to launch on October 1st 2012 during the Chinese Golden week holiday.

At the current time, console manufacturers can not introduce their products into China due to local regulations; foreign game publishers and developers are also facing similar challenges. Ubitus GameCloud specializes in rendering games requiring heavy graphics processing in the cloud and delivering streaming video of the gameplay to users. End users can instantly access the high quality games on connected TVs, STBs, mobiles, Macs and PCs. Through this border-free platform, content providers can now enter this new market with ease.

Looking at the video above, China Telecom and Ubitus will be able to get some pretty decent games like Super Street Fighter IV: Arcade Edition, Assassin's Creed: Brotherhood, Borderlands, Mafia II, BioShock 2Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas, NBA 2K11, Major League Baseball 2K11, Dragon Quest VIII: Journey of the Cursed King, Monster Hunter G, Super Monkey Ball Adventure, Super Monkey Ball: Banana Blitz and Final Fantasy X. Some of these games didn't even release on PC and will be made to work on servers powered by NVIDIA's Geforce GRID cloud gaming technology. OnLive would be pretty happy to get some of these games.

Such a great support by game publishers in China isn't surprising when one considers that the consoles market in China is not very strong, there is virtually no games retail at least no legal retail because of the rampant piracy and that China Telecom is backing the whole operation. Since to date large game publishers couldn't monetize their high-end PC and console games in China, they must feel pretty happy that China Telecom has embraced cloud gaming which makes game pirating virtually impossible. No wonder that game publishers like Take-Two Interactive, Ubisoft, Square EnixCapcom and SEGA are willing to publish their high-end games on the upcoming cloud gaming service by China Telecom regardless of the possibility that they won't look and control that good through cloud streaming. OnLive for instance doesn't have such luck in the western markets where games retail and consoles are established players and it's harder to gain game publisher support. Perhaps OnLive should consider entering the South Korean market before it gets too crowded with cloud gaming companies, China is a harder nut to crack as they would need support by state owned companies and many larger enterprises unsuccessfully ran against the great wall of China.

Stimulated by the policy of Fixed Mobile Convergence from the Chinese authority, the connected TV market is expected to expand to 53 million households by the end of 2013 with a CAGR of 130%. China Telecom and Ubitus collaborated with Skyworth, KONKA and LG to demonstrate the premier HD gaming service over the cloud at the 2012 Tianyi (E-surfing) 3G Handset Fair & Mobile Internet Forum which was taking place in the Guangzhou Pazhou International Convention and Exhibition Center from June 15 to June 17. Visitors were able to experience a rich library of game titles, including fighting, racing, sports games, RPGs, FPSs and casual games. There were also daily tournaments of Super Street Fighter IV: Arcade Edition.

The upcoming cloud gaming service by China Telecom and Ubitus was also demostrated at the 2012 IGDA Games Pavilion Networking Party that Ubitus sponsored, which has been the biggest party during Chinajoy 2012. The cloud gaming demonstration was running on 50” TVs in the Ball Room of Kathleen’s 5 on the 5th floor of the Shanghai Art Museum, next to the People’s Park. People had the opportunity of experiencing this ready-to-go service right before the launch. Visitors could control a series of popular titles, including fighting, racing, sports, action and RPGs, from noted game publishers and developers over gamepads or tablets.

“China is one of the biggest and fastest growing economies and gaming markets in the world. With our cost-effective cloud solution, time-to-market strategy and proven commercialization records with other tier 1 carriers, Ubitus will be the first commercial cloud gaming solution for China's connected TV market,” said Wesley Kuo, CEO of Ubitus. “We are delighted to work with China Telecom to build the world’s largest cloud gaming kingdom and to deliver a high quality gaming experience to the Chinese market.”

Ubitus GameCloud technology specializes in rendering games requiring high-end graphics computing on servers in the cloud and streaming videos of the gameplay to gamers. Coupled with NVIDIA's Geforce GRID cloud gaming technology and the Kepler GPU architecture, GameCloud is capable of more game concurrencies and less power consumption. Without any download or installation, end users can easily enjoy cloud-based games anytime, anywhere through a pre-bundled interface on their smartphones, tablets, smart TVs, STBs, Macs and PCs.

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.

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