The acquisition of Gaikai may give Sony Corp. a lot more than just an additional revenue stream from a service, but will eventually enable backwards compatibility of new game consoles with older titles as well as will create numerous new opportunities for the company and its customers.
While Sony Computer Entertainment has never officially confirmed what hardware is going to be used for the next-generation PlayStation game-console, it is widely discussed that the company will utilize microprocessor and graphics chip developed by Advanced Micro Devices, which means the PS4 will be incompatible with video games for previous-gen consoles. However, Sony has found a solution that will not only solve the backwards compatibility problem, but will potentially expand the PlayStation business.
At around the time of PlayStation 4 roll-out, Sony will launch its fully-fledged cloud-service for video games. The service will stream games developed for PlayStation, PlayStation 2 and PlayStation 3 (select titles) to select PlayStation-branded devices (including PS4 and, potentially, PS Vita portable console as well as Sony’s own smartphones and tablets), according to two separate reports (1, 2). A bigger idea is to provide a digital copy of games with each purchase in retail, which may be a good news for those, who is afraid to damage discs.
By providing its portable and non-portable game consoles an ability to stream older PlayStation games, Sony will automatically boost the library of games for the devices, which will significantly improve their competitive positions on the market. In addition, cloud streaming of video games will make Sony more flexible for choosing the hardware for next-gen consoles.
What is currently known about the PlayStation 4 is that it is based on a microprocessor and a custom Radeon HD graphics processing unit (GPU) designed by AMD. Those chips should be powerful enough to support video games in 4096*2160 (4K) resolution and video games in stereo-3D mode in 1920*1080 (1080p) resolution.
Sony did not comment on the news-story.