The trend to offering PC games via cloud-based broadband streaming services appears to be gaining steam, at least as far as investors are concerned. This week one of the two leading streaming game companies, Gaikai, announced via a press release that it has secured an additional $30 million in funding from a variety of investors. The companies involved in this new round of funding is lead by NEA, but also has companies like mobile processor maker Qualcomm involved. Other investors include Benchmark Capital, Rustic Canyon and Intel Capital.
The privately owned Gaikai states that it will use the money "to accelerate the growth and adoption of its Interactive Cloud Network." Gaikai was first announced back in 2009, just after its main rival in the streaming game space, OnLive, officially revealed itself at the 2009 Game Developers Conference. OnLive launched its streaming game network first in June 2010 and now has over 100 PC games that can be streamed to most PCs and Macs and played within a few minutes, bypassing long download and install times.
While OnLive has concentrated on selling access to its library of games, either individually or via its Netflix-like "all you can eat" monthly service, Gaikai has taken a different approach, offering free streaming game demos of titles via web sites as a kind of interactive ad. It currently has the rights to stream demos for a number of games from publisher Electronic Arts (OnLive currently does not have any EA games in its library). More recently Gaikai announced a deal with Capcom to offer Capcom's games on Gaikai's streaming network.