Sony has announced its acquisition of the streaming gaming service Gaikei, for an impressive $380 million (£242 million), with plans to establish a new cloud service with its infrastructure.
For a while now Gaikai has been the main competitor of Onlive, offering a remote gaming service that instead of requiring specific hardware required to play the game, users can simply play using their standard laptop or desktop, with Gaikai handling all the processing at its end.
As part of the purchase, Sony has not only acquired the service as it stands, but all of the company’s technology and infrastructure, meaning that Sony could potentially use the service for much more than just gaming.
“By combining Gaikai’s resources including its technological strength and engineering talent with SCE’s extensive game platform knowledge and experience, SCE will provide users with unparalleled cloud entertainment experiences,” said Andrew House, group CEO of SCE.
“SCE will deliver a world-class cloud-streaming service that allows users to instantly enjoy a broad array of content ranging from immersive core games with rich graphics to casual content anytime, anywhere on a variety of internet-connected devices.”
Some have suggested that this move by the firm is to set the ground work for a Playstation 4 based cloud platform, though of course Sony has yet to make any claims to that effect. If brought in line with specific hardware, Sony could perhaps release a system that wasn’t high in spec at all – in fact quite under powered compared to contemporary systems – and offer next-gen games remotely. This would allow Sony to sell its PS4 at a much more competitive price than its rivals.