According to new reports, Amazon might be mulling getting into the business of cloud-based gaming. With the massive growth in popularity for streaming entertainment, the biggest name in online retail has ventured into instant-access video in recent years. Reportedly Amazon is now staffing up for a new web service tied to gaming. Details are still very scarce though.
According to these same reports, Amazon is aiming to create a new kind of service where “every gamer can create, compete, collaborate and connect with others at massive scales.” This doesn’t sound exactly like the XClouds and Stadias of the world, but it still sounds intriguing. “The odds of them letting the Scarlett and PS5 launch without Amazon being there is zero,” said Michael Pachter, an analyst at Wedbush Securities, to CNET. And while the report hasn’t been fully confirmed, the reasoning makes sense.
The new console generation is just around the corner in 2020. The leaks today point to the PS5 coming out in less than a year. And it would make sense to have a streaming-focused presence on the platform. The new performance benchmark for the upcoming console generation looks promising, and being able to take advantage of all that power should deliver much more engaging and innovative gaming experiences.
The insiders suggest that the massive growth of Amazon Prime, which has generated at least $100 million annually, as a major incentive for this new plan. Amazon has certainly been pushing gaming more and more, ever since the company acquired Twitch. There is certainly some room in the market, at least in theory, as streaming rival Netflix confirmed that they had no plans to enter game streaming.
It will be interesting to see how their previous efforts in video games fit into the grand designs of Amazon. Amazon Game Studios has developed games like Airport Mania, Sev Zero, Til Morning’s Light, and The Grand Tour Game for consoles and mobile platforms. The studio hasn’t been without issues though, as some downsizing happened previously.
I don’t really think that cloud-based gaming is the proper response though. The problem with the idea is that it runs into many of the problems Stadia is currently experiencing. The Google service has been plagued with a number of issues in just the first few days of launch. The massive bandwidth requirements alone have hamstrung a lot of growth potential. And even users in the most developed areas of the major US cities report latency issues. And even before launching, the lack of titles on the service also hampered success.