Video game streaming is a growing trend within the industry. Even enormous companies like Google are attempting to tackle this with Stadia, although its launch has been underwhelming. Additionally, Microsoft is attempting to do so with Project xCloud, Nvidia with GeForce Now and Apple with Apple Arcade.
With video games becoming more and more demanding, it's easy to get lost in this concept of "streaming games." How could anyone's internet connection possibly withstand the power needed to run games designed for the next generation?
According to game dev investor and strategy advisor Reinout te Brake, the answer is 5G.
- 5G laptops are coming: Here is where you'll be able to buy them
- The first 5G laptop is here
- Tests for Project xCloud have begun
For those who plan to stream games using a wired or internet connection, there are already tons of fast ways to do this, but for those hoping to game while on the go, mobile data is likely your best bet. Due to the limitations that come with 4G, most have low expectations for the future of on-the-go gaming.
According to the BBC, 5G will likely change this, as it can go anywhere from "10 to 20 times faster in real-world conditions." Obviously, this is in comparison to 4G, and these speeds are what will be paramount to streaming some of the biggest games coming within the next few years.
This should allow for very fast frame rates, a consistently high resolution, virtually no input lag, and low ping in multiplayer games. However, Reinout te Brake also believes that "most people with smartphones will not actually see that much benefit from 5G," specifically citing that it will be most impactful for those who plan to game and watch high-quality videos.
5G won't arrive in earnest for at least several more months, but once it does, companies developing video games for streaming platforms could find a far higher success rate.