by Anton Shilov
07/04/2012 | 11:11 PM
Sony Computer Entertainment will try to make Gaikai game streaming technology a key component of its PlayStation platform. Simultaneously, the company does plan to enable cloud-based games on virtually all of its devices. However, Sony has no plans to make Gaikai exclusive for its devices and therefore the service will continue to operate on gadgets made by other companies. Still, question is whether it will expand to new third-party products.
Speaking to the Wall Street Journal, Andrew House, chief executive officer of Sony Computer Entertainment, said Gaikai's services will be focused on Sony's PlayStation consoles, but eventually would be expanded to other Sony products. Sony stressed that its basic strategy is to allow Gaikai to keep operating its business as it has been, which means that Gaikai's game streaming will continue to be available for personal computers running Apple Mac OS X, Microsoft Windows and other devices. A bigger question is whether Sony will also expand Gaikai to newly-emerging devices.
Recently Gaikai signed an agreement under which its video game streaming services will work on select Samsung Electronics' high-definition TVs released this year. Sony declined to comment whether the agreement will be cancelled or will proceed as planned. Gaikai also has partnerships with LG Electronics and Wikipad.
A distinguishing feature of Sony PlayStation consoles - both stationary and mobile - is a list of exclusive games that can work only on Sony's hardware. It is not clear whether Sony will allow them to be played on third-party devices using its Gaikai service, or will keep them exclusive to Sony's hardware in general, thus making own-brand products more appealing for gamers.
Another significant question is whether Sony will continue to expand Gaikai service to new connected video capable device including PCs, digital TVs, tablets and smart mobile devices based on new platforms, such as Apple Mac OS X "Mountain Lion", Microsoft Windows 8 or Windows Phone 8, Google Android 4.1 "Jelly Bean" and so on. Sony earns its bread and butter selling hardware, so it is not interested in making third-party devices capable of playing leading-edge games. On the other hand, game streaming may also bring a lot of profits to Sony.