What is Cloud Gaming?

Video games are becoming increasingly complex, both in terms graphics and mechanics. They require better computer specifications to play correctly. This means it’s unlikely you’ll be capable of playing games in 2021 on a computer that was purchased in the 2000s, unless you significantly upgrade its components. Cloud gaming is where it is an option that lets you play your favorite games on any device, so long as you get a stable internet connection.

Cloud gaming servers manage the processing of video games, rather than your device’s hardware. They do this by sending you compressed frames in response to input. When you press a button this input gets sent to the cloud-based server, which sends you a fresh video frame in response. It’s a basic idea however, it takes a lot of bandwidth to transmit those videos in real-time. Cloud gaming has been hampered due to this limitation, but recent advances in edge computing as well as cellular networks have allowed it take off.

As a result, services such as Stadia and NVIDIA’s GeForce Now can stream games in near-real-time quality to devices with different levels of power. They’re also designed to eliminate the lengthy downloads and setup process of installing a game onto your own hardware, which is especially important for people with variable network conditions. But there are still many hurdles that need to be removed before cloud gaming can really take off and be successful, such as issues with latency and bandwidth.

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