OnLive CEO: Cloud-based games to replace all others in 10 years

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."

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Music/Video on physical media is almost dead thanks to Streaming / Torrenting / Digital Downloads. The only dics I use are console games and occasional rented redbox movies. Even A PC (Windows) today needs a good high speed internet connection to continue to be useful. So the notion that Games will switch to Cloud / Streaming in the future is not surprising. Onlive's current products on the market are indeed satisfactory. I am definitely going to invest in this company when it goes public. Folks who refuse to believe cloud gaming is the future are seriously living under a rock. There are indeed technology limitations today. But these limitations are so minor that I am sure It would only take less than three years (not ten as quoted by perlman) to overcome these limitations in the USA. Zune on XBOX and Playstation Store had their own share of Video content; yet they were forced to include Netflix, Hulu, Vudu Apps on their Consoles. With Vizio bundling Onlive App on their HDTVs, The next console by Sony or Microsoft is going to flop if they do not bundle their consoles with the Onlive App. I would'nt be surprised if the next Apple TV refresh includes an Onlive App and Apple TV comes with a Game Controller.

So, if this all works as stated, our game machines would literally be a VNC dummy terminal, and the games should be super cheap (no retail, no pressing, no printing, no shipping, no middleman, no resale, no piracy!) compared to the $70+ they are now for a physical copy.

The prices probably won't drop. Shipping, printing, pressing have little to do with prices. Just look at black ops on steam.

I don't think everything will go to live streaming but I do believe that most games will have a cloud component similar to MMORPG's where you game on a central server or at-least a central server runs enough of the game to make it impossible to play offline as a way to curb piracy. I also think that we won't be able to play any games without first entering some kind of log in screen.

Games are moving towards a service instead of individually sold products.

Vice said,
Games are moving towards a service instead of individually sold products.

+1 Kinda
I think micro transactions & subscriptions will be the future. Every game can be played for free online with heavy advertisements (like cutscreens of advertisements) but for a small price ($15-24 a mth) have no in-game ads. For $50 a month get 'first dibs' at new release games, say 1-2 weeks before the free release, and maybe a free video streaming or music streaming service, skype video calling, whatever else...

For a bigger fee ($75 a mth), have 'first dibs' and X amount of DLC/addons (5 addons for whole account) to enhance the games. for $150 a mth get first dibs and 10 addons per game for DLC.

Some addons only available with certain subscritions, discounts with subscritions over buying 'freelance' and so on and so forth.
Nickle and dime the death of gamers.

Once we have ~1Gb/sec internet available cheaply (as in everyone has it), that will be possible.
Even if that did happen, local copies would still have to be available for a good 10 yrs after most of the world gets super internet, cos you have ****ty countries like New Zealand with terrible internet (currently >$50 USD for just 20Gb/month, and the largest plan I have seen is about 60Gb/month)

Wolfbane said,
Once we have ~1Gb/sec internet available cheaply (as in everyone has it), that will be possible.
Even if that did happen, local copies would still have to be available for a good 10 yrs after most of the world gets super internet, cos you have ****ty countries like New Zealand with terrible internet (currently >$50 USD for just 20Gb/month, and the largest plan I have seen is about 60Gb/month)

Most places arn't running fibre and are going cell towers. Cell towers can do like 50Mbps now. If a console had a 50Mbps wireless line dedicated to itself - no one could screw around with it and no one would pay for bandwidth but the carriers/publishers. The cost of them shelling the game out over the wireless networks would be built into the fee of the game.

So, it means goodbye to ATi and nVidia? No more need to water-cool GPUs and overclocking? Future looks confusing to me...

xan K said,
So, it means goodbye to ATi and nVidia? No more need to water-cool GPUs and overclocking? Future looks confusing to me...

Even if cloud-based gaming will become the new standard in the next 10 years, the graphics will still be in demand for software like photoshop, which is very demanding, also the servers that run these games will require graphics cards aswell.

xan K said,
So, it means goodbye to ATi and nVidia? No more need to water-cool GPUs and overclocking? Future looks confusing to me...

No, their products will be moved to the cloud for faster rendering there.

xan K said,
So, it means goodbye to ATi and nVidia? No more need to water-cool GPUs and overclocking? Future looks confusing to me...
Exactly. Goodbye to retail sales of components, hardware and software. Say hello to dummy terminals that are super light and have unheard of battery lifespans. Everythings ran from the cloud. No worries of dead fans, data loss, viruses/screwed up OS loading, huge power hungry processors, or the need to drag your computer with you everywhere.

The ultimate security model is not allowing anything in or out, like a brick.
Since this isn't functional if we take away the hardware and store that datacenter side, and we take away the ability of the full software installation and locate some of that server-side.. we are essentially allowing only ONE entry into the system, which mimics the ultimate security model by closing the door to all phsyical intrusions as well as limiting software-side breaches as EVERY move on the service can be monitored.

GreyWolf said,
He also thought that WebTV was the future of browsing.

It is. I know many people who use their IPTV set top box as their only means to access the internet.

I agree whole heartedtly with this guy. He also came out a week ago and told the world about a technology his thinktank company invented that will blow open the wireless spectrum.

If his technology gets picked up by the big wireless providers, we'll certainly see this come true, as we won't need copper to the house anymore.

Omg, Baker says cakes to replace all food.

Trot on Mr.Ceo and come back when you`ve got the majority big names saying that. Hard sell imho after all this lulz and anon database hackery going on and were being asked to send everything into the clouds.....

I wouldn't go as far as to say what the title of the article says, but games will definitely take a massive hit just like the music industry has.

As technology advances games etc are becoming more and more accessible, to the point where you can have them almost instantly. It used to be the case that it would be quicker for me to go into town and buy a CD than it would be to download it; but now I can legally and cheaply get a full album in less than a minute. No high street store can compete with that kind of convenience.

The same will eventually happen with games.

If he's talking about playing games from the cloud, rather than downloading them to a local device, then I can't see that taking off. People like to *own* their stuff. Imagine if you couldn't play the single player game that you bought because there was a problem with your internet connection? That would be a pain in the ass..

It might be popular, but I still think in 10 years, people would still want the guarantee of offline gaming (for sure control the service is down, power is out, disconnected from WiFi, etc.), be able to trade games if they purchase it for keeps, etc.

I don't agree with him at all, while some things are good for online streaming
video for example, you watch it and that's it, you don't repeat the same scene 500+ times
a game you could be going back and forth through the same area countless times
if it was streamed each time, that would be VERY wasteful and cost a lot
and you know publishers wont eat that cost, they'll just make all those games a monthly fee.

Truely -Cloud- based games will never take off, it's just too wasteful no matter how fast
your connection is, and as much as I don't like the idea, the future is probably on-demand
download services, like Steam or Xbox Live Marketplace, we even might get to the point
where games are downloaded each time you want to play it, or even caching as you play
but those are much further than 10 years away.

Didn't he make similar claims about his other projects, Xband and WebTV?

It seems he's made a career out of bilking uninformed investors and consumers out of their money.

I'm calling it right now: not only will OnLive be dead in 10 years but cloud computing will be relegated to the archives of tech history long with Apple's Newton.

Everytime someone makes a bold proclaimation like this the opposite usually happens. I remember reading nine years ago where an IBM exec said his company would one of four biggest hard drive makers after everyone else died. We know what happened: IBM sold its hard drive division to Hitachi who then ultimately sold it to Western Digital. The tech industry is full of predictions and hyperbole spouted by fools seeking to bolster their brand name; nothing more, nothing less.

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