Currently the concept of playing games via a streaming cloud-based service is in its infancy but according to Steve Perlman the CEO of OnLive, playing games via a cloud server could replace all other ways of playing games. Venture Beat reports that when asked when cloud-based gaming will fully take over Perlman stated, "We’ll be there in 10 years — if that."
OnLive launched in June 2010 here in North America and since then the service has been made available for PCs and Macs. Televisions can also connect to OnLive via the company's MicroConsole which still needs a wired Internet connection. OnLive has plans to offer the service to Android-based phones and iPads in the near future along with built in television support as well.
One of the big advantages of purchasing and playing games via a cloud-based service is that it should almost eliminate game piracy. With no retail disk or even a standard downloadable file available to access, pirates would not be able to get their hands on games that are played on a distant server run by companies such as OnLive as well as its biggest rival Gaikai.
Not only will pirating games become a thing of the past with cloud-based gaming, it should also eliminate cheating by players in multiplayer games. According to Rob Wyatt, the chief scientist of another streaming game service called Otoy (which so far has yet to launch), multiplayer gamers would not be able to send a packet to a game's multiplayer server to do things like getting a headshot with little effort. Wyatt said, "Spoofing packets is nearly impossible because of the speed of the transmission and because all the computing happens at the other end."