The year 2020 has been very eventful for cloud gaming. Due to the imposed lockdowns at a global scale, the number of gamers in 2020 has risen by over fifty million, as opposed to an annual growth of around eleven million during the pre-pandemic times.
A significant shift towards Cloud Gaming can be attributed to more than one factor alone. Perhaps the most notable element has been the massive weight that already established cloud giants like Microsoft have put behind cloud gaming.
Other leading names, both in Cloud Computing as well as gaming, were quick to respond to this industry trend and introduced their own cloud gaming platforms. The basic concept behind cloud gaming is quite similar to cloud computing.
The major selling point for cloud gaming platforms is that as a gamer, why should you be paying heavy sums of money for dedicated gaming consoles or building your own high spec gaming PC. Instead, why not stream your favorite game that is hosted in a data center.
With cloud gaming, your freedom does not end here, rather its just the beginning. You have a wide library of games that are already hosted over the cloud to choose from. Then, you have the added liberty of enjoying the game over the device of your liking.
The whole concept of cloud gaming is also adapting quite well to the latest generation of gamers, whose preferred device platform is smartphones. Now, by leveraging the Cloud, even high end games can be enjoyed over mid to high spec smartphones.
Realizing this emerging market, game developers have also started designing games that adapt well to both the Cloud and smaller handheld devices such as smartphones or tablets. We are also witnessing some other changes on the game development front.
Game developers are now positioning themselves into two major camps. The first one belongs to developers who may allow multiple cloud gaming providers to host their game over their respective cloud infrastructures. In return, they get a chunk of the revenues.
On the other side would be game development teams that are working on proprietary projects that only a single cloud gaming provider would offer. Such offerings, despite being time and resource intensive, may prove to be a source of competitive edge.
However, the future of gaming appears to be slowly but surely headed towards the Cloud. Some analysts have forecast that by the year 2027, the size of the global cloud gaming market may exceed a whopping US $7 BN. Let’s keep our fingers crossed on that.