Even as I typed that title, I have a hard time buying into it. At the same time, the idea of it has me incredibly excited!
According to a site called The Information (which is subscriber-only), news has spread pretty quickly across the internet of a project codenamed Yeti that Google is working on. The specifics aren’t completely solidified, but it seems something is definitely going on with this development.
According to an article over at The Verge, Google’s latest foray into gaming will be something similar to Playstation Now or Nvidia’s GeForce Now. These services don’t require immense hardware as they run a collection of games on high-powered servers that are streamed to your home. Instead of dealing with a massive console rollout, this approach would allow Google to use its existing infrastructure and massive cloud computing expertise to leverage great gaming with minimal hardware for the user.
Google’s recent aquisition of Phil Harrison (who’s been employed in leadership roles at both XBOX and Playstation) also signals that the company may be finally ready to get serious about gaming in a way that makes sense for the connected, cloud-based generation.
The biggest question here is hardware. Early signs are pointing to a Chromecast-powered service being tested with Yeti. How that would work remains a bit of a mystery, however, as there would be no way to connect a controller to a Chromecast at this point. At least, not that we are aware of.
Bluetooth would be the most obvious choice for this connection, but there’s no indication that any Chromecast device has Bluetooth at this point. Perhaps a Chromecast update is upon us this year as we are well over 2 years since the last update if you don’t count the Chromecast Ultra (which is coming up on a year and a half in age).
If there was a way to connect a controller, streaming games on a Chromecast would be the ultimate lightweight gaming solution. Can you imagine being able to play console-quality games on a device that costs less than $50? The possibilities are tantalizing, to say the least!
Chromebooks and Gaming
If this streaming service was also available via Chromebooks, I wouldn’t be upset by that either. Sure, Android has added much in the way of gaming on Chromebooks. We also took a look at the state of webGL gaming on Chromebooks and that is promising, too.
However, if Google manages to pull this whole streaming game service off, there’s no reason Chromebook users wouldn’t be able to get in on the fun as well. If a Chromecast will be able to pull it off, a Chromebook will definitely be up to the task! Imagine being able to play high-quality 3D games on any Chromebook as long as you have a solid internet connection. I’d sign up immediately!
Remeber, all this is educated speculation at this point, but what fun speculation it is! We’ll keep an ear to the ground and update as soon as we hear or see any further developments.