Report: Sony Close To Buying Cloud Gaming Service That May Transform PlayStation

Sony might be in talks to acquire either OnLive or Gaikai — the two biggest cloud gaming providers — according to a report on Edge that follows up on previous articles on MCV and VG 24/7.

The speculation jibes with comments previously made by a Gaikai executive about this coming E3. It begs the question: what if a console manufacturer got into the cloud gaming business in a big way? Seeing as how the Sonys, Nintendos and Microsofts of the world are hugely dependent on disc-based content, it'd be the equivalent of dogs and cats sleeping together. Well, get ready to have a talk with Fido and Furball, because they may be about to be roommates.

OnLive's managed to bring spiffy tech to market but would probably continue to struggle to make a dent in the hardware market so a deal like this would make sense for them. Gaikai, on the other hand, hasn't sunk money into manufacturing any kind of consoles or controllers, but it has shown proof-of-concept for YouTube integration and has a deal for the service to be integrated into upcoming models of LG smart TVs. Of course OnLive has a similar deal with the Google TV platform.

Sony offers full downloads of games via the PlayStation Network but such an acquisition would give them added infrastructure and the proprietary tech that eith company uses to make its streaming viable. Now, it'd be foolhardy to think that such a move would totally replace the next-gen hardware that Sony's working on. But it might shift the design of Orbis/PS4 towards being a box that can stream content more effectively than the current console. The future of consoles is going to be more online-centric moving forward and if these reports are true, Sony would get ahead of the curve in a big way.

When contacted for this story, Sony replied that they do not comment on rumour. Kotaku also reached out to OnLive, who had no comment to offer on the story.


Comments

    It may also improve thier patch download speeds.

    It makes perfect sense to me, if I was Sony I'd be looking for a hook as well. They future-proofed the PS3, why not the PS4 as well?

    Tried PC gaikai just last week. It refused me saying my net speed was to inconsistent. Thus will inky be feasible in Japan and other places where 50mbps connections are common and 100mbps are available too.

      What are you on about, 100mbps is pretty common in the main metropolitan areas of Australia.

    Inky? Only

    Could be a good long-term move for Sony. Not so much for right now, but 10 years from now.

    Although I have to say I'm surprised that they've actually got the cash to be making this kind of acquisition given all their financial woes.

    Call me a box hugger but the cloud make me nervous. Just another way to take ownership and control away from the customer.

    So does onLive actually work? Wasn't it promising to be the future of gaming a few years ago?

    Every couple of years (since at least the early 90s) someone proclaims that the future is thin clients. I just don't get it because in my mind it runs contrary to the advances described by Moore's Law. The way I see this making sense for Sony is for games where they don't want to sell the hardware anymore such as the PS1 and PS2. So you would pay a subscription fee and get access to a massive library of PS1 and PS2 games without any problems with emulation.

    Just don't put in your credit card details.... lol

    This deal makes more sense for TV's than it does for the Playstation console.

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