Follow Slashdot blog updates by subscribing to our blog RSS feed

 



Forgot your password?
typodupeerror
Google Media

Now Google Might Make a Game Console and Game-Streaming Service (fastcompany.com) 90

Google could try to get serious about gaming with a rumored console and game-streaming service, according to the Information. From a report: The service, codenamed "Yeti," would stream modern games over the internet instead of processing them on locally, allowing them to run weaker hardware such as Google's Chromecast dongles. Several other companies, including Nvidia and Sony, already offer their own game-streaming services, but the problems are always the same: Publishers tend to support these services halfheartedly or not at all, and even with an excellent internet connection, the experience isn't as responsive or dependable as a powerful home console. It's unclear how Google might solve those problems, but the company is reportedly considering a holiday 2017 launch.

Now Google Might Make a Game Console and Game-Streaming Service

Comments Filter:
  • Good luck! (Score:5, Funny)

    by jbmartin6 ( 1232050 ) on Wednesday February 07, 2018 @03:06PM (#56085409)

    the company is reportedly considering a holiday 2017 launch

    Simply amazing, not only is Google just re-doing what others have already done, they are trying to go back in time and do it at the same time!

  • what about building out an fiber network so we can use this gaming system with out hitting our cap

    • They struck a small snag. They used Google and found 96% of the worlds population does NOT live in the USA. I mean who knew...am I right...
      • Most of the world's population does indeed not live in the USA, which means decent network speeds without caps. (I'm talking about countries which can afford prices on this -- there's not much money Google can earn in sub-Saharan Africa.)

  • by Luthair ( 847766 ) on Wednesday February 07, 2018 @03:21PM (#56085479)
    Maybe fix chromecast first, its become increasingly buggy across all your products.
  • by bigdady92 ( 635263 ) on Wednesday February 07, 2018 @03:25PM (#56085503) Homepage
    Google itself will rocket through development like an adderall fueled college developer mainlining 4 loko's (blue raspberry old school of course) roll it out with maybe 60% of it done, get a few publisher's on board with sweet deals and throw tons of money at them, and users login for their Beta (it's always BETA) service.

    Then the adrenaline haze wears off, Google actually has to support clients, wrangle in contracts from publisher's to put more games on the system, figure out how to get around bandwidth caps that your lovely ISP's enforce on you, roll out development updates while slashing the team and budget until 18 months later Google walks away for the next OOOHHH SHINEY! thing and we are left with a stillborn service that makes the Phantom console look like Steve Jobs christened it from Heaven.

    Points of Reference:
    Gmail
    Hangouts
    G+
    Whatever their Photo Service is
    Google Glasses
    ChromeOS
    etc
    etc
    etc
    • by Anonymous Coward

      It is not that the adrenaline wears off.

      At google, the only way to get promoted, and get higher pay, is to Launch a product/feature/...
      The entire engineering ladder and the whole promo cycle is fully focused on launches and launches only.

      This has the effect that once a product/feature is launched then the most ambitious engineers simply move to another team to work on whatever will lead to their next promo.
      Launch, Promo, Abandon is what we used to jokingly describe the engineering ladder internally.

      This is

    • by shess ( 31691 )

      Google itself will rocket through development like an adderall fueled college developer mainlining 4 loko's (blue raspberry old school of course) roll it out with maybe 60% of it done, get a few publisher's on board with sweet deals and throw tons of money at them, and users login for their Beta (it's always BETA) service.

      Then the adrenaline haze wears off, Google actually has to support clients, wrangle in contracts from publisher's to put more games on the system, figure out how to get around bandwidth caps that your lovely ISP's enforce on you, roll out development updates while slashing the team and budget until 18 months later Google walks away for the next OOOHHH SHINEY! thing and we are left with a stillborn service that makes the Phantom console look like Steve Jobs christened it from Heaven.

      You forgot to mention that the next "OOOHHH SHINEY" thing will be a video game console capable of streaming. It just won't share any APIs or code or anything with the current one.

      That said ... I'm honestly not sure I see the point of this. If you remove the battery and screen from an Android device, what you're left with is maybe $50 worth of stuff. Add controllers (or allow phones as controllers) and it feels like streaming is irrelevant.

    • Google itself will rocket through development like an adderall fueled college developer mainlining 4 loko's (blue raspberry old school of course) roll it out with maybe 60% of it done, get a few publisher's on board with sweet deals and throw tons of money at them, and users login for their Beta (it's always BETA) service.

      Then the adrenaline haze wears off, Google actually has to support clients, wrangle in contracts from publisher's to put more games on the system, figure out how to get around bandwidth caps that your lovely ISP's enforce on you, roll out development updates while slashing the team and budget until 18 months later Google walks away for the next OOOHHH SHINEY! thing and we are left with a stillborn service that makes the Phantom console look like Steve Jobs christened it from Heaven.

      Points of Reference:
      Gmail
      Hangouts
      G+
      Whatever their Photo Service is
      Google Glasses
      ChromeOS
      etc
      etc
      etc

      This^^^^^^^^^ Totally this.

      I'm pretty much done buying any hardware google produces.

      If there was an option to lease/rent for a year or two until support is dropped, and I can just send it back or throw it away, and stop paying, I'd almost be OK with that. Almost.

    • and we are left with a stillborn service that makes the Phantom console look like Steve Jobs christened it from Heaven.

      Points of Reference:
      Gmail
      Hangouts
      G+
      Whatever their Photo Service is
      Google Glasses
      ChromeOS
      etc
      etc
      etc

      Are you kidding or being sarcastic in a strange way? Google is still very dedicated to many of the products in your list: Google Photos, ChomeOS, Gmail, Hangouts, G+. 5 out of 6 in your list.

  • Nintendo is in there because that's their whole deal, Sony and MS felt kind of luke warm about even getting around to replacing 360 and PS3, but would probably keep their platforms going so long as it breaks even for brand exposure or something. NVidia and Steam have hardware no one buys, too, right? I guess they could make sure to price it so it isn't a loss leader for peripherals and then also claim it mines bitcoins or something.
  • They'll lauch it half finished, apply some healf hearted updates that half fix half the bugs, and promptly lose interest in the whole shebang simply because it didn't set the world on fire instantly.

  • by DogDude ( 805747 )
    1. Google doesn't need any more of my information. They have enough.
    2. Google is notorious for suddenly dropping projects for reasons known only to them.
    3. At least in the US, we don't have great Internet connections in many, many places. Certainly not consistent enough to play bandwidth intensive games.
  • "..perhaps the company has noticed the enthusiasm around Nvidia’s Shield TV set-top box.."

    I have approximately zero friends and coworkers with one of these or any interest it getting one. People I know who want to game do it on a PC, PS4, XBO or Switch. Or a combination of them. Yes its anecdotal, but I have yet to see any first hand "enthusiasm" for this product. Given how cheap the XBox One and PS4 got over the holidays last year who in their right mind would buy a Shield for gaming. Does not comp
    • by Anonymous Coward

      I have one and love mine. After I got it, at least two of my coworkers also bought one and love it. It's awesome even just as a set top box. The fact that I can play cheap versions of games I no longer have consoles for is awesome too (emulators and games like GTA Vice City that were remastered for Android).

  • Do we really need another machine with a Skyrim port on it.
    How many times has that been ported now?
  • by keith_nt4 ( 612247 ) on Wednesday February 07, 2018 @04:19PM (#56085763) Homepage Journal

    I read a little about "streaming" games around 2010...I think it was called "onLive", something like that. I was actually living in a house with a fiber optic connection. Probably one of the few places in the whole of north america with a low latency connection that could of worked with the streaming service.

    I never signed up for it though to even try. From what I could tell at the time you had to actually "purchase" a game at the full price of $60 which was non-transferable and non-refundable. In other words if the service was down for maintenance or went out of business the developer would keep my $60 and would have nothing to show for it. No physical disk, no license key, nothing. Didn't sound like such a great to me.

    I only told that anecdote to engage in uninformed speculation: google has something of a history of adopting an existing thing but putting some new twist on it. When gmail came out for instance it was unique in it's 'unlimited" email space which was a departure at the time from yahoo/hotmail/etc. And when they got started in the MVNO business they adopted multiple networks (with Google FI). And I don't think there was anything quite like an OS revolving around a web browser so thoroughly before ChromeOS came out.

    So to engage in a little uniformed speculation I would expect some similar twist on a "gaming service" they released. I think game streaming makes sense on some level. I know they have data centers for miles and miles. And it wouldn't surprise me if some amount of them sat idle for some percentage of time. And it could be used to advertise their services against competitor services (Azure and Amazon's cloud for instance). They would have their own twist on it though. Maybe it would be a $10/month unlimited thing. Maybe it would mainly focus on android games. Or maybe it would lean more towards a "limited device set" like Google Fi and there would just be a set of "google game streaming compatible" devices in TVs and certain tablets.

    How the latency/compression thing would be resolved I have no idea. Unless they just focused on more turned based/slow moving stuff more akin to civilization games.

    • And I don't think there was anything quite like an OS revolving around a web browser so thoroughly before ChromeOS came out.

      Actually, there were tons of almost "browser-only" OS for ages by that point.
      - Lots of them using heavily customize and cut down versions of the "Embed" editions of Windows, mostly in the corporate world.
      - And lots relying on customized Linux installation in more hacking-friendly environment.
      BUT ALL OF THEM being exclusively used in "Kiosk" mode : as single use terminal to browse a captive site or to display a slideshow and other information on a public screen.

      Before ChromeOS, all web-browser-based OS wher

    • by harryk ( 17509 )

      It wasn't so much that they failed, they were bought out (Sony I think?) and the product itself worked well. I was part of the beta, continuing with them when they went live, and bought a handful of games through them. Fortunately, they were running various promos and I never paid full price (though admittedly, I did lose all that content when they closed). I understood the risks with the service, and the only problem I ever found with their service was in the racing games, in those cases the latency and in

  • Nice (Score:4, Funny)

    by nospam007 ( 722110 ) * on Wednesday February 07, 2018 @05:08PM (#56085999)

    "The service, codenamed "Yeti,"

    It will be abominable I suppose.

  • by philmarcracken ( 1412453 ) on Wednesday February 07, 2018 @05:12PM (#56086025)

    Google truly has stopped all innovation and is spending its time chasing competitors, often in saturated markets. They can afford these silly endeavors of course, but it feels like such a waste of talent and resources.

  • by CanHasDIY ( 1672858 ) on Wednesday February 07, 2018 @05:22PM (#56086081) Homepage Journal

    Does anyone remember when OnLive [kotaku.com] and the Ouya [tomsguide.com] console were the "streaming game service" flavor du jour?

    Pepperidge Farms remembers.

  • All the games will be free to play, but the console will come equipped with a 360 degree camera and microphone that are always on and are required to be unobstructed 24/7 in order for the console to work so Google can spy on you, on top of all the metrics and personal info they will collect on you and ads they will push in your face on the console itself....

  • by ffkom ( 3519199 ) on Wednesday February 07, 2018 @06:58PM (#56086675)
    ... pristine rendered graphics at high frame-rates to your TV, with game enthusiasts pixel-peeping every new release for the slightest differences in image quality. And then some corporations tell you they will provide alike streamed over your meager Internet line.

    The truth with all streaming video services is that they use such heavily lossy compressions my eyes hurt from looking at the artefacts.

    I like my gaming hardware local, offline, and connected to my 4k TV at 18 GBit/s (via HDMI).
  • Ship has sailed... (Score:4, Interesting)

    by XSportSeeker ( 4641865 ) on Thursday February 08, 2018 @01:56AM (#56087949)

    ROFL... wrong release date aside, can Google be any more clueless these days?

    I think it's sort of a Sillicon Valley syndrome at this point... they live in such a disconnected place from reality that they don't even realize how much money they are wasting in ressurecting dead concepts, abandoning products people really use, and churning out the most obvious mistakes that basically anyone outside their campus can point out to them. Even people who work there sometimes quit to open start ups with some of the most ridiculously bad ideas, like that Bodega thing. Perhaps they are relying too much on what their data collection and AI overlords tell them instead of just going around to ask what people think of it, real people, their costumers.

    Not only game streaming services have failed a long time ago, all the reasons people both from the client to the provider side pointed out as to why they failed have not changed. And they are incredibly easy to understand.
    Basically, you don't really have enough people with stable connections to make this work that fits the profile required. And the people who actually do have stable connections and cares about paying more for high bandwidth and whatnot, are that much more likely to care about unsolvable streaming problems like latency in controls, and as much high res as possible without it killing the game multiplayer stream in itself. They are that much more likely to just pay extra for a gaming PC or console instead.

    With how much game prices are dropping, specially on mobile and PC side, plus how you'd still need to invest some money to keep game streaming going on - like a stable and beefy connection, either Ethernet or powerful routers, plus some monthly subscription plan -, and then the knowledge and understanding on how streaming works... it all adds up to an extremely limited market.

    The most exemplary case was the entire nVidia Shield concept... nVidia got an adequate device (which is still among the most powerful in it's class despite being 3yrs old already), had a whole ton of publisher support, it worked well not only for game streaming but also as a media streaming device... and yet it's still niche and sold kinda poorly for what it was, with a reasonable price to boot. The whole investment justified only because Nintendo got in the mix and used the SoC in the Switch.

    And it's not like we had one or two cases of failures and meltdowns, plus still surviving services that would compete directly with whatever Google is trying to offer... it's a full list of them:
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/... [wikipedia.org]

    I'm telling you, people working at Google and several other companies in Sillicon Valley live in some alternate reality without even realizing it. I can't explain it in any other way. I mean, sure, Google does have some highly valuable and always improving stuff, but that's usually limited to teams that have good leadership running a tight ship. But the moronic ideas that I constantly hear from these huge corporations at times makes me wonder what sort of environment can lead to such stuff even coming out of meetings in the first place, let alone being announced out to the press and sometimes becoming real products.

    The entire smartphone approach from Microsoft, persistense on Windows 10S and Window Store, the entire idea of churning out multiple apps and services for the exact same thing from Google, how they handled Hangouts, payment systems, chat, social networks... damn, it's a level of corporate and employee blindness that's incredibly hard to understand. And it's not a hindsight thing... tons of people saw those as failed ideas as soon as they were announced. It's a bit baffling. Hello, do you even market research anymore?

    Heck, one of Google's latest "project" is pretty telling... that lifecasting camera thing that seemingly came out straight from the past decade or so. Wasn't there really anyone working at Google that knew about the lifecasting fad of early 2000s that spawned multiple devices just like that, and how shortlived the whole thing was? Really?

    • There is a single big difference between Yeti and all the other Silicon Valley startups that came before :

      Google.
      And their datacenters.

      Currently, Google has already datacenters all over the world: there's always a Google server within 5 ms of ping time within reach of any of your internet-enabled gadgets.
      Currently, Google has also tons of GPUs in those datacenter, mostly used for their deep neural net AIs and/or to help compressing video that user upload on Youtube (specially for codec that don't have a lot

  • without the game titles its going to be an epic fail. I opted for the original FireTV because it was a streaming box, but also had a BT wireless game controller to play games. There really wasn't anything worth having IMO. Fast forward many years and I think I've used that $50 controller maybe 3 times ever. More than likely this google device is going to be an overpriced means of playing Candy Crush on your livingroom TV

That does not compute.

Working...