Google not only wants to be the first thing people see starting the internet but also their game consoles according to new “Yeti” project details. The Information reported recently that Google is developing a streaming service that broadcasts games onto Chromecast or a possible new device. Codenamed Yeti, it appears to be a subscription-based deal where the user is able to play a collection of games, similar to the Netflix model.
Google is not the only one to throw their hat in the game streaming as Sony bought Gaikai for $380 million in 2012 to launch their own platform PS Now. Google has already flirted with home gaming with the Nexus Q and their Google Play store on Androids. This Yeti venture would mark their first go into the AAA console gaming space.
Former Xbox executive Phil Harrison joined their hardware unit last month, signaling their commitment to this project. Harrison has roots in gaming as he spent 15 years at Sony from 1992 to 2008, before heading to Xbox in 2012.
Streaming Firewalls to Extinguish for Yeti
A big hurdle for streaming services is the infrastructure not being quite there yet. For many, downloading a game could take days due to network speeds or longer because of limited data caps.
The Federal Communication Commission (FCC) released a report stating that half of all Americans on fixed connections still have below average internet. As of 2015, the standard is 25 mbps, but recently there are plans to lower this standard along with the plan to end net neutrality. Also, gaming streams are not like a Netflix stream, due to more factors than just picture and audio quality. Lag and input delay are an issue that plague other services today.
Being able to provide quality services that can support the user’s load is crucial. 2 million people with an AOL account and dial-up are still waiting for the rest of this article to load. This issue might be bypassed as Google has the resources to pull it off. They could enable games to be playable on most connections with either a specialized device or new tech.
Yeti has gone through multiple iterations and was far enough along, close to being released last year. Whatever this current iteration is, the company looks to be behind it. Video games are a billion dollar industry and the word is that Yeti should drop in the 2019 holiday season. Google is like a landlord with rent; they don’t want some of the money, they want all of it. Yeti is only one of their various projects aiming for that goal.
Would you subscribe to a Google-backed gaming streaming service? Let us know in the comments!