Google is making plans to break into the games industry by offering a games streaming service and possibly hardware, according to a report from Kotaku.
Now that Google has infiltrated so much of society (it even has its own verb!) by way of search engines, internet browsers, email, and mobile devices, the conglomerate is looking ahead to new avenues for growth. The games industry seems like a natural choice for the tech company to attempt to conquer.
Right now, any games industry domination is simply in the planning stages, according to “five people who have either been briefed on Google’s plans or heard about them secondhand,” Kotaku reports.
So what’s the plan? Apparently a games streaming service is top of the agenda. There have been whispers about the project, codenamed Yeti, since February of this year when The Information reported it. Yeti could “work either on Google’s Chromecast or possibly a Google-made console still being developed, according to people with knowledge of the project,” that article states.
The biggest advantage of this streaming service is that it would lower the barrier of entry price for PC gamers, as the hard work of graphics rendering would be offloaded to computers in Google’s system, allowing the person using the streaming service to play even if their computer is not up to the hardware specifications typically needed for the game. Of course, this would still require a strong internet connection. Fingers crossed that the eventual announcement also comes with news of Google Fiber coming to more cities.
Kotaku sources also stated that Google held several meetings with game developers during E3 2018, possibly trying to get the developers to make their games available on Yeti, or perhaps attempting to “buy development studios entirely.”
At this time, even less information is available on any hardware plans Google has in the works. While some might speculate that Google could attempt to take on Microsoft and Sony by offering a competitive console, it seems also likely that they could just offer a simple system ideal for streaming with Yeti.
Google did not immediately respond to Variety’s request for comment.
Recently, we have seen hints that this era is the beginning of the end of the console wars. Last week, Nintendo and Xbox advertised their cross-play partnership with the “Minecraft” Switch/Xbox One trailer. And Microsoft VP Phil Spencer’s recent interview with Variety hinted that the future of gaming is more about the player experience regardless of what system they play on, rather than trying to get players to purchase one console over another.
If Google wants to succeed in the games industry, it would seem that Yeti is going to be the key to success.