For years the games console industry was one of the most exciting and lucrative around. It has seen man y changes over the years and yet it has always prospered, always shown room to grow. This has continued to this day, and some of the largest technology companies in the world have a vast stake in the games console market.
The thought of owning a gaming machine in your own home would have been a farfetched one thirty years ago. Practical personal gadgets, such as the early mobile phone, were expensive and clumsy enough, even with a lot of money being invested in their development. The home computer was not common, and with the World Wide Web not having exploded into the public’s viewpoint, technology for leisure was still a long way from many peoples’ minds.
However, the very nature of technology is that it is always expanding and improving. For example, computer memory and processing speeds are always increasing at an exponential rate, what is currently the peak will soon be horribly out of date. This will always be two sides of a coin for the gaming market. On one hand it means there will always be an opportunity to sell improved versions of a current brand, such as the PlayStation one, two and three; there can be repeat customers. However this ever evolving nature of gaming means there is also more scope for competition. A delay of releasing a new product by one year can mean it will be leaps and bounds ahead of any console that was released before that.
This has led to “generations” of consoles being released; opposition companies releasing productions almost simultaneously to their rival companies. From Nintendo 64/ PlayStation one, to Xbox 360/PlayStation 3. the waves of new consoles, and the relatively high cost of the products has meant people have often been divided between rival gaming machines.
However, this history of competition may soon come to an end with the age of high speed internet, vast processing powers of personal computers and advances in software. The combination of these has led to smart, high definition televisions that are combatable with cloud gaming.
Many have tipped cloud computing to be the next big trend, the abundance of internet connections literally anywhere that you travel and the advertisement campaigns of certain large technology companies, the future seems almost certain. This future will affect every industry, not least the gaming industry. Using the cloud, TV can hook up and gamers will be able to participate online with no additional hardware. This has the edge over consoles because unlike the clan like behaviour of previous gaming generations, cloud gaming will be unanimous, everyone will be able to play everyone; no new hardware will be needed. Another benefit is that the gaming experience will be much more portable, being able to be played on phones and other smart TVs. The game experience could expand more rapidly that it currently does, with no need to make or design any hardware, cloud gaming is purely software based, meaning smaller companies can compete against large conglomerations.
Overall, many signs point toward a different future for gaming, but will the large existing companies catch on before there is a revolution in the gaming industry similar to the one that redesigned the music industry.
August 29, 2012 at 7:57 pm
Internet connection speeds need to VASTLY improve before this will happen. I live in Ireland, and we have hopeless internet here. I can also see PCs taking over from consoles, however the Mac may be left behind unless major games studios embrace it (as I talk about in my article about it http://www.techsling.com/2012/08/the-state-of-gaming-on-the-mac/ )
Also, in terms of the smart TV games market, yes I see that happening, however, devices such as the Kinect must vastly improve. Also, I do not want to see the gamepad die.
August 31, 2012 at 4:41 am
No, I suspect they are not. But it is interesting that there is a lesson to be learned from the mainframe. Be careful not to get stuck listening to the ‘priests of the faith’ – listen to the market, not your current customers, and then adapt.
September 6, 2012 at 5:12 am
The home computer wasn’t common,that was before. Because PC is a must today!
September 14, 2012 at 1:41 pm
the major problem with anything cloud based is that it is totally dependent upon off site storage and internet connections. what happens when there is an outage like with GoDaddy or Amazon? if you are using the cloud for work, you can\’t get your files. if you are using the cloud for gaming, you can\’t play. plus, if you are attempting to off load functionality such as graphics rendering to cloud based software, you are adding a great deal off overhead on top of game engine functionality. I can see an extension of some type of hybrid solution that w currently have in some instances, but complete cloud based gaming seems to me to be quite a ways off
June 19, 2013 at 11:53 am
I don’t think this is going to happen straight away, but who knows what will happen in the future?
With more powerful systems continually coming onto the market consoles could be under threat
June 21, 2013 at 8:02 pm
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