Google reportedly working on 'Yeti', a game streaming service. May feature 'console'/controller

gofreak

Member
Oct 26, 2017
3,404
All seems a bit tentative still, but they recently hired Phil Harrison, so perhaps they're taking it seriously.

https://www.theinformation.com/articles/google-may-step-into-gaming-with-yeti-streaming-service?jwt=eyJhbGciOiJIUzI1NiJ9.eyJzdWIiOiJwZXRlcmprMTk4M0Bob3RtYWlsLmNvIiwiZXhwIjoxNTQ5NTc0NjQ1LCJuIjoiR3Vlc3QiLCJzY29wZSI6WyJzaGFyZSJdfQ.LlnM8GwvEB3ewPBDgSiLKWN_5OakUtANfIaWBPUfgXo&unlock=e481e6c2c5f70efb

Google may be about to take its most serious steps to get into the videogame business. The company is developing a subscription-based game streaming service that could work either on Google’s Chromecast or possibly a Google-made console still being developed, according to people with knowledge of the project.

The service, codenamed Yeti, would put Google at the forefront of a nascent part of the videogame business, one that lets people play games as they’re being streamed, rather than using downloads or disks.
An early iteration of Yeti was designed to work with the Chromecast TV streaming stick, according to a person familiar with the project and another person who was briefed about it. More recently, Google has been testing a hardware gaming console for running the Yeti service, one of the people said. Yeti also includes a hardware controller that’s used to play the games, developed by Google’s hardware team.

Google has discussed Yeti with top-tier game developers, but it’s unclear whether any of them will develop a game specifically for Yeti or only make existing streamed games available.
Whether Google will go ahead with the service remains unclear. The company intended to launch the Yeti service in time for the 2017 holiday season, but it was delayed for reasons that remain unclear.
 

Nirolak

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Oct 25, 2017
5,660
Well, it would fit with hiring Phil Harrison as a big deal executive for a mystery department.
 

ghostcrew

Grabbed by the Ghosties
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Oct 27, 2017
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As someone who invested early in OnLive and PS Now, I'm super sceptical of streaming gaming still. I've never had an overall great experience with it. At best it's been just good. But if anyone can do it it's probably Google... They've got amazing infrastructure for this kind of thing.
 

SnakeyHips

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Oct 31, 2017
2,700
Wales
Game streaming services are an interesting idea but considering I can notice the lag and loss in quality when in-house streaming, it's got a long way before it becomes a viable option.
 

OrdinaryPrime

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Oct 27, 2017
11,042
As someone who invested early in OnLive and PS Now, I'm super sceptical of streaming gaming still. I've never had an overall great experience with it. At best it's been just good. But if anyone can do it it's probably Google... They've got amazing infrastructure for this kind of thing.
Are they gonna solve the fundamental issue of the speed of light? Obviously they can build data centers everywhere but there is going to be lag regardless, IMO.
 

Mikey Jr.

Member
Oct 25, 2017
8,460
These things come and go like the wind.

Do people still have confidence in this shit? Another piece of plastic that plays some android games that you'll shelf in about a week.
 

Cronogear

Member
Oct 27, 2017
2,091
A Chromecast style dongle with a Netflix style subscription service for games would be pretty sweet, especially if Google pushes it hard.

But like all game streaming services, it will depend on your internet. And it needs true console style games, not just casting Android games.
 

Vagabond

Member
Oct 26, 2017
1,464
United States
Not really interested in a service to stream PC/mobile games to the big screen. Now, if it has original games, then we might be talking but I doubt Google has anything up their sleeve that would make me pay a monthly fee.

If only Chromecast had the ability to stream directly from a home PC/console.
 

Trago

Member
Oct 25, 2017
2,254
As someone who invested early in OnLive and PS Now, I'm super sceptical of streaming gaming still. I've never had an overall great experience with it. At best it's been just good. But if anyone can do it it's probably Google... They've got amazing infrastructure for this kind of thing.
This is what I'm thinking too. I was partially invested in OnLive as well, and I've dabbled with PS Now on both PS4 and the PC. The overall problem with streaming is that compression artifacts can be super apparent a lot of the time. Basically, the experience is terribly inconsistent.

I hear Nvidia's Geforce Now service is technically better, and I'd imagine that Google of all companies could get something like this right, but have a consistent experience should be top priority if we are to take game streaming seriously.
 

Crayon

Member
Oct 26, 2017
11,110
Oh man I'm not going to get my hopes up...

But this is a fat shakeup waiting to happen.
 
Oct 27, 2017
6,997
If streaming idk.

If a console, they could make waves. Idk if I like the idea of a Google console or not. Might be nice to have more competition if it was PS4/Xbox level.
 

Gamer 77

Member
Dec 8, 2017
38
Something is happening. This could be big...

Streaming games is the future, and Google is at the forefront of faster Internet with Google Fiber.
 
Oct 27, 2017
11,258
I could maybe see some value in turning a Chromecast into a Steam Link-style streaming device for your TV, but I'm still not sure I buy this idea of a "Netflix for gaming" due to the various problems.
 

pswii60

Member
Oct 27, 2017
12,349
UK
I guess my question is, what games are they going to stream?
This.

I mean, based on my PS Now experience - due to the input lag, poor IQ and instability (due to absence of cache) of game streaming, in the real world it's really only suitable for very basic games. But very basic games could already run natively on a streaming stick, which kind of negates the point of streaming them.
Something is happening. This could be big...

Streaming games is the future, and Google is at the forefront of faster Internet with Google Fiber.
I've no doubt that if Google is going to do gaming, then they're going to do it in a big way. Which is probably what has Microsoft quaking in their boots, because it wouldn't just affect Xbox, but also potentially Windows as a gaming platform. And it's the rumours about bigger players getting in the gaming market (Amazon too) which is why there might be some credence to some of the crazy acquisition rumours. Sony has far less to worry about, with PS Now already up and running even if it is ropey as hell, well established internal studios and plenty of exclusive IP. And Nintendo always just does their own thing.
 

JINX

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Oct 25, 2017
3,555
It's going to be an android games shit show of a store, some publishers will support but with last gen games and the odd indie game. The hardware will be cheap and underpowered, reviewers will say the subscription is nowhere near worth the price and that the controller isn't great. It will go the way of Nvidia's efforts, expect Nvidia actually has a foothold in the market. If google wanted to do this they should have gotten into the market earlier and with hardware and games, you need a platform, studios, publisher relationships and hardware for this to happen. With Google having no foothold in the industry it will fail, they will probably being going up against MS's efforts in the area if it's been delayed.
 

Qwark

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Oct 27, 2017
3,437
Didn't they have the Nexus player a couple years ago? And the Apple player thing hasn't really gone mainstream. This is interesting but I'm skeptical that they can find a place in the market.
 

Trago

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Oct 25, 2017
2,254
I do find it interesting that the article mentions an actual console. If they're gonna include a console, then they should allow for game downloads, otherwise what's the point?
 
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gofreak

gofreak

Member
Oct 26, 2017
3,404
I've no doubt that if Google is going to do this, then they're going to do it in a big way.
One point in the article - and I don't know how true or not it is - is that Google's actually been kind of half-hearted/wishy-washy about games to date. It's not necessarily a given that they'll commit in a convincing way if that is true.

If they did make a big play, they aren't to be underestimated. But this kind of (streaming) play wouldn't be a direct confrontation to Microsoft's existing market as such, at least not in the shorter term.

I do find it interesting that the article mentions an actual console. If they're gonna include a console, then they should allow for game downloads, otherwise what's the point?
A 'console' might be nothing more than a Chromecast in another form-factor with a bundled controller, if it's really a pure streaming service. So the point would be a cheap access point that's independent of other devices and plugs directly into a TV, I guess.
 

AudioEppa

Banned
Oct 27, 2017
3,322
It would be super easy for me to make fun of this, like I’ve have in the past with others who tried.

But this news has a different vibe about it..

Everything is always same ol same until something big pops off. Back in 1998, Could you imagine gaming being how it is right now? Just saying.
 

Sloane

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Oct 25, 2017
1,020
It would be super easy for me to make fun of this, like I’ve have in the past with others who tried.

But this news has a different vibe about it..

Everything is always same ol same until something big pops off. Back in 1998, Could you imagine gaming being how it is right now? Just saying.
Yup. Streaming will be a thing, like it or not -- and if Google pushes it, well...
 
Oct 27, 2017
73
Everything is always same ol same until something big pops off. Back in 1998, Could you imagine gaming being how it is right now? Just saying.
No but back in 2008 I could? Gaming in general has slowly developing trends. What was the last big thing that ever "popped off" and what exactly could be so big with what google can provide? At best its a decent game streaming platform..imagine a good version of onlive. I can't see them publishing games, making console tier hardware etc.
 

ASaiyan

Member
Oct 25, 2017
7,228
Anyone with Google Fiber ever try PS Now? Maybe at that internet speed these services can actually work, lol.

Then again, they might be pragmatic about this and just trying to stream Android apps, rather than full AAA PC/console titles.
 

zoodoo

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Oct 26, 2017
3,998
Montreal
The problem with streaming games is it does not rely only on the provider's infrastructure. Google has the latest tech but a the user's setup plays a lot in terms of lag, input delay etc... So I am still very skeptical.
 

SoyUnPixel

Member
Oct 25, 2017
133
I do feel curious if someone else enters the current console space. But as a streaming console?

Nah, pass.
 

ZhugeEX

Senior Analyst at Niko Partners
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Oct 24, 2017
3,048
Google are certainly looking to become a larger player in the games business. That’s for sure.
 

Trago

Member
Oct 25, 2017
2,254
A 'console' might be nothing more than a Chromecast in another form-factor with a bundled controller, if it's really a pure streaming service. So the point would be a cheap access point that's independent of other devices and plugs directly into a TV, I guess.
A Chromecast bundled with a controller would make sense.
 

mindsale

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Oct 29, 2017
3,953
Sounds like Ouya Twouya. I'd love it if they mixed things up by becoming a fourth player though.
 

Tregard

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Oct 27, 2017
4,299
Wasn't there talk of Microsoft creating a streaming stick version of the Xbox at some point alongside Game Pass? Perhaps Google is beating them to the punch there.
 

ASaiyan

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Oct 25, 2017
7,228
Amazon Vs. Google is not where I expected the console war to go.
Considering their most recent business strategies have been 'Google vs the entire tech industry' and 'Amazon vs literally the entire world of business', it was only a matter of time before they both broke into games.

I don't think either company has any interest wading into a traditional, $300+ proprietary set-top box paradigm though. We are probably looking at a new era of Chromecasts and Fire sticks, as others have said in this thread.
 

Wowfunhappy

Member
Oct 27, 2017
2,985
If anyone could actually get the latency down to acceptable levels, the advantages would be obvious. That's a huge ask, however. Games on OnLive always felt super off.