If leading free game publisher Glu Mobile will have its way, you could buy a phone with a 2 GB of available storage and still emerge happy in the process. The reason is that the company is working on a technology that will no longer require consumers to download and install a game in order to play it.
Such technology is anchored on streaming, and game files will merely be stored in the publisher's server. Gamers will only have to click a link made available on a website, email or social media and the gameplay will then commence.
"[Streaming] presents the experience of your app without all the barriers; that really helps with discovery and brand awareness," Richard Au said in a Bloomberg interview.
Next Generation Internet
If one, indeed, factors in the emergent internet technologies, Glu's model is not so far-fetched and could help revitalize its current stable of underperforming titles. For example, there is the case of the next generation 5G technology, which can offer up to 1 Gbps of internet speed. Even Google's fiber internet, which boasts of similar speed, is already rolling out in select regions in the United States. Verizon is also gearing up for a 2017 rollout.
Glu is already reportedly working on one title that will have a streaming gameplay. Sega, the publisher of the popular Sonic the Hedgehog franchise, is also said to be developing its own streaming platform. Both these publishers have tapped a California-based startup called 1APP to develop their respective technologies.
Effect On The App Marketplace
Observers believe that streaming games will significantly affect the revenue of the app marketplace, which includes Apple's App Store and Google Play Store. Their role as a middleman in the consumption of gaming titles could be significantly diminished. Popular games could make up the bulk of these platforms' revenue as has been seen in the case of the Pokemon GO hit. Both stores take cuts from the sale of each paid app.
This is aggravated by the fact that other applications are already jumping into the streaming bandwagon. A startup called Chimani has already developed apps that use Google Streaming and what is even more interesting is that their use have significantly increased this year. Video streaming is, of course, already here and is still expected to expand in the future.
Glu and other game developers will, however, need a consistently fast internet connection to succeed. Some graphics-heavy games will simply not work if connection lacks stability. One can say that upcoming network technologies will boast of unprecedented speeds but the question is, can they be maintained without any disruption?