Gaming in the Cloud

When you hear the words cloud hosting, most people will think about being productive at work with services such as Azure or SharePoint, or maybe even storing your personal docs and photos in Google Drive.

But it's not only the enterprise and consumer markets that are benefitting from the revolution that is cloud-based hosting; the Gaming industry has been dipping their toes into the waters of cloud-based services.

Why game in the cloud?

We all know that gaming is not the cheapest of hobbies, as an entry-level gaming desktop can easily cost more then R10 000 and consoles like the Xbox start off at R7 000 (find out more about how to choose a laptop for gaming in this post).

With cloud-based gaming, your game performance is no longer limited to the specs of your desktop and now mainly relies on a stable internet connection.

When did it all start?

Nvidia was amongst the first gaming services provider to provide cloud services when, in the year 2015, the GeForce NOW service was launched in beta. This service allowed people to stream their games instead of having them run on a local device such as a desktop or even an iPad.

This product from Nvidia started the race to “Gaming in the Cloud” - now, how far have we come since the product entered the beta phase back in 2015?

Today, we have quite a few very successful game streaming services from Google, Microsoft and of course Nvidia.

What are the system needs for cloud-gaming?

Google Stadia seems to be one of the more popular platforms currently, and is leading the way for affordable gaming by cutting out the need for high hardware costs.

To run Google Stadia on your computer, you would requires these performance specs from your hardware which is well below the spec of the average laptop being used.

  • Memory: 4 GB

  • Graphics Card: Intel HD 3000

  • CPU: Intel Core 2 Duo E6400

  • Google Stadia File Size: 1 GB

  • OS: Windows 7 and higher

Let's have a look at the bandwidth (internet speed) required:

  • For a 720p 60-frames per second gaming experience, you will require a minimum of a 10Mb fibre connection. The resolution support goes all the way up to 4k, which will require a fibre connection of 35-40Mb.

  • The sweet spot of 1080p will require a 20Mb fibre connection.

Cloud-based gaming is just another example of how the Cloud revolution improving the experience and accessibility for more people.