Traditional online services (e.g., GGBet betting) allow you to connect to a server and gain remote access to the files stored on that server. All websites work more or less this way. It is possible to say that cloud gaming is a slightly more advanced version of this technology. You still get remote access to files stored on a server, but there’s almost no limit to what you can do with those files. If you are wondering what cloud gaming is, you are in the right place: we will first explain how this technology works and then give some examples of the most popular services.
How Does Cloud Gaming Work?
Let’s say you want to play a video file on a website: this video is stored on the server you are connecting to, not on your computer. However, you can start watching immediately after pressing the “play” button, and you can stop & continue watching whenever you want. The files you interact with are perhaps on a server thousands of kilometers away, but thanks to the internet speed, you can interact in real time.
Now consider a PC game instead of a video file: this game is already installed on a remote server. It starts working as soon as you press the play button (just like a video file), and you can interact with it by using the keyboard/mouse keys. You could stop whenever you wanted while watching a video, right? It’s the same logic: when you press a key on your keyboard, the on-screen game character moves or does something. You are interacting in real time with a file that is not stored on your own computer, that’s all.
Does Your PC Matter?
No. In cloud gaming, game files are stored on remote servers, and nothing is running on your computer. What you’re doing is similar to watching a live video stream that you can interact with in real time. That’s why you don’t have to use a PC: cloud gaming also works on smartphones and tablets. To put it simply, if you can watch Twitch streams without any problems with the device you use, you will not have any problems with cloud gaming too. What is important for this technology is not the device features but the internet speed. The faster your internet is, the higher resolutions you’ll use and the better experience you’ll get.
Available Cloud Gaming Services
Google Stadia, which attracted great attention when it was first announced among cloud gaming platforms, made its debut in November 2019. Competing with the emergence of new rivals, Google Stadia wants you to buy the game you want to play on Stadia instead of a library system, unlike other platforms. In other words, you need to buy Google Stadia games separately, even if you own them. One of the highlights of Stadia is that it has its own controller. Thanks to this controller, you can have a compatible gaming experience in the Stadia ecosystem. Stadia can work on all laptops, desktop PCs and mobile devices. Support of up to 4K 60 FPS is offered in the pro package of the service.
Service requires at least 20 Mbps for 1080p gaming. For 4k gaming, you need at least 35 Mbps internet speed. The service costs $9.99 per month. If you want to buy the special package called “Founder’s Edition”, you have to pay $129.99.
One of the biggest steps Microsoft has taken for the Xbox side is the Xcloud – a cloud gaming service that comes with the Xbox Game Pass Ultimate subscription. All “Ultimate” members of the Game Pass can take advantage of this service, and a large library of games (*) can be played over the cloud with a subscription. Currently, the price of Xbox Game Pass Ultimate is $14.99 per month, but the Xcloud service is not available in every country. In other words, check availability before purchasing the Ultimate Game Pass.
(*) Games that are available in the “Game Pass” library – you can see a list of them here.
GeForce NOW, the cloud gaming service driven by NVIDIA, can already be used in multiple countries. With GeForce NOW, you can play the games you purchased from the partner platforms on a virtual machine by connecting to NVIDIA servers. With an average of 15 Mbps internet speed, a sufficient quality can be obtained for 720p gaming. Although it is possible to play with lower internet speeds, the higher and more stable your internet speed, the better your experience will be.
GeForce NOW currently has 2 different subscription models. The first is the model called Basic, which is free and offers players 1 hour of session time; the other is the model called Premium and includes unlimited session time and “RTX”. The price for the Premium model is $9.99 per month.
Amazon is an important company that continues to develop new technologies in every industry, and gaming is no exception. Amazon Luna, which can have an important place among cloud gaming platforms, is trying to provide users with a quality experience by using the power of Amazon’s servers all over the world. A monthly fee of $5.99 is required for the Luna+ channel within the service. At the same time, you can subscribe to the channels opened by the developers on the system and play their games. In other words, this service is based on “developer channels”. For example, Ubisoft will have its own channel in the system, and its new games will be on Luna+ as soon as they are released. However, if you want to play all Ubisoft games available, you need to subscribe to the Ubisoft channel too (the subscription fee for the Ubisoft channel is $14.99). The service also has its own controller.