July 20th, 2020, 22:31 Posted By: wraggster
While the list of things we don't know about the next-gen consoles has been growing mercifully short in recent months, there remain some pretty huge gaps in that landscape. Some of those open questions pertain to the console launches themselves, starting obviously enough with how much it's all going to cost. Others, however, are broader questions about the strategies being pursued by the platform holders and other major players in the industry, and how they're going to shape the industry's business models and the experiences of players over the coming five to ten years.
This question is more salient in the upcoming generation than in the past few, because this is the first generation in some time where the rival companies are really articulating different visions of the future. Success or failure in recent console generations has largely come down to a question of valence; the major firms were all promising to do broadly the same things, so the winner was the company that did those things most competently and effectively.
There's no bigger wildcard in the deck for next-gen consoles than the role of game streaming This time around there are a lot of different possible futures in the mix, and I'd argue that there's no bigger wildcard in the deck than the role of game streaming. Both Microsoft (with xCloud) and Sony (with PlayStation Now) have embraced the notion of game streaming to some extent, while industry giants NVIDIA and Google are both also pitching for a slice of this as-yet-hypothetical market with GeForce Now and Stadia respectively. Amazon, the world's largest cloud services provider, will probably also want in at some point, perhaps once all of its efforts in the gaming space stop resulting in some form of public tripping over its own feet.
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