Google is reportedly gearing to take on behemoths Sony and Microsoft for what may end up becoming a significant chunk of the world’s gaming market. Although it is reportedly working on an in-house gaming console, the technology that would really set Google apart from competition is an in-house streaming platform called Yeti. A new report suggests that although Google’s tryst with gaming goes back a long, long time, it is only now that it seems to have reached an all-time crescendo. Meaning, we might just be closer to a Google-branded gaming platform — including dedicated hardware — now, more than ever.
Google reportedly took the Game Developers Conference in March, and E3 in June, to showcase Yeti to several big video game companies this year. This was so it could gauge their interest in its take on gaming. The company, furthermore, is said to be on the look-out of not just game developers but full-scale development studios that would then hopefully work exclusively for Mountain View, in a way studios work for Microsoft and Sony. Google is also apparently on the look-out of talent, both game developers and marketers, from EA, PlayStation, and other top companies dealing in video games. Only this year, Google hired veteran video game executive Phil Harrison, who has spent major time at both Sony and Microsoft.
Yeti, for now is just a vision, a peak into the future if you may. At least until the time we hear more about it from Google. And, the report suggests, it’s very ambitious as it ought to be, since the biggest takeaway from a such concept would be the fact that gamers wouldn’t need hard-core rigs to play hard-core games in such an online-only future. Any device, mobile or otherwise, would be able to stream high-quality graphics and as such the lines between consoles and PCs would blur. The report, in fact, talks about a scenario wherein gamers would be able to play a high-end game like the Witcher 3 on a low-end PC inside a Chrome tab. Moreover, it envisions a future, wherein Google’s own YouTube would be integrated right into the core of the experience so gamers looking for a quick walkthrough when stuck in a game, could do just that at the press of a button.
Google’s vision for streaming as the future isn’t new or surprising. It seems to be the time when even others are talking about it. Microsoft, a company that has often been criticised for the lack of exclusive titles with regards to its newer consoles, has only recently confirmed that it is working on its own streaming service. Sony, is yet to make its ambitions clear about such a thing, but considering its stubbornness of locking down its platform — the recent one being Fortnite — and discouraging cross-platform play, it would be interesting to see how things pan out for the Japanese major should it also be looking for such a thing.
Coming back to Google, the one thing that really sets it apart from rivals, and also kind of makes one believe that it might just have a chance with game streaming, is its massive scale. Google has its servers practically all over the world, so that’s one check for checking lag. Secondly, it has a service called Google Fibre, that allows for high-speed internet in at least some parts of the US, so that’s one check for seamless play. Clearly, it has two very critical points in its favour. It would be sometime before streaming becomes mainstream, but, if luck would have it — and considering all the resources owned by Google — Yeti could be one solid attempt to tap into the future of gaming. At the same time, it’s also imperative that gamers take this piece of information with a pinch of salt, because Google is known to start things, only to end them soon enough. Only time will tell if Yeti is one piece of technology that crosses that barrier.