The Next-Gen Half-Step Streaming War Begins (New podcasts!)

Despite putting up my E3 2018 podcast just two days ago, I decided that I wanted to do another one to talk about the Steam Link App, my next-gen industry analysis article, and the hilarious ways that VR is trying to create a killer app. As you’ll hear when you listen to it, I go further into the reason why I predicted that the next generation of consoles were going to use streaming game services as their big selling point. However, I could never have predicted that this morning — right as I was preparing to upload the episode and publish this article — news broke that PlayStation Now is gearing up for a major rehaul.

Listen to the E3 podcast now (Episode 004)

Listen to the streaming/VR podcast now (Episode 005)

Read on for more discussion and proof that my prediction was dead-on correct…

Look at this story by VG24/7:

This is what I said in my article, posted the day after Phil Spencer made his E3 announcement about the next generation of Xbox and streaming:

This E3 would have been too early to properly announce the next console for either platform, but they are both going to prod each other into making the first move. Unlike the old days, they aren’t afraid of a “new generation” starting, since there won’t be a real generation divide anymore. Just grab some PC parts off the shelf and slam it together… voila! They can create the “next gen” within 3 weeks, with no Research & Development costs at all. Don’t like it? You’re not allowed to complain, because you upgraded your smartphone, hypocrite!

So where does that leave these companies? Not only are gamers buying things based on respect instead of power, but the hardware is guaranteed to be mediocre from now on as a way of avoiding research costs and selling basic online functionality instead. The only logical answer is more online integration. In the case of Xbox, who are the losers of this generation that need to push things first, it only made sense to me that they would create their own streaming service. Sony already purchased Gaikai years ago and create the failed PlayStation Now service, but they are in a position to compete along this axis in the future.

Think it’s a spooky coincidence? Think I have inside connections with major publishers? Nope, it was a logical deduction based on the stagnation and greed of the two console platform owners who are stuck with outdated hardware and nowhere to go but the cloud. Just make sure you listen to the podcasts to get more discussion and insight.

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