Although cloud gaming continues to become more popular, it’s unlikely to replace high-end mobile gaming devices in the near future.
Mobile gaming has come a long way since the days of simple pixelated games like Snake. Modern smartphones boast powerful processors and high-end graphics, allowing you to seamlessly play resource-heavy games like Fortnite, Call of Duty, and PUBG.
And now, with cloud gaming, you can also enjoy these games on a low-end smartphone. The technology lets you stream and play games directly from remote servers – your phone doesn't render the graphics. With so much processing capacity left unused, you can split your screen while gaming and stream live football games or tracking NFL playoff odds on the same mobile device.
In this article, we’ll look at the technologies driving cloud gaming on mobile, its benefits to smartphone gamers, and what the future holds.
One of the main challenges to cloud gaming on mobile devices is latency. Streaming games in HD uses a lot of data and, depending on your internet speeds, can cause lag and ruin your gaming experience.
However, recent advancements in technology have alleviated this issue, making cloud gaming services like Xbox Cloud Gaming, Nvidia GeForce Now, and Amazon Luna popular among smartphone gamers.
5G networks offer increased bandwidth, helping improve cloud gaming on mobile devices. It offers incredible speeds enabling players to seamlessly play their favorite games on Xbox Cloud and Nvidia GeForce on their smartphones.
To put it in perspective, 5G can deliver speeds up to 20 Gbps, almost 200 times faster than 4G. While the real-world speeds are less colorful, you can get between 75 - 245 Mbps with T-Mobile, for instance, compared to the 19 - 76 Mbps on 4G from the same mobile service provider.
This enables you to reduce latency and enjoy smoother gameplay in 1080p at 60fps on your smartphone or tablet without interruptions. On top of providing super-fast speeds, 5G can handle numerous high-bandwidth users simultaneously without impacting speed or causing instability. And as 5G coverage expands worldwide, you can expect more mobile gaming fans to start using cloud gaming services.
Edge computing brings enterprise applications like cloud gaming servers closer to the source of data. This reduces the distance your game inputs and video data travel, significantly improving latency.
By connecting players to servers in their location, gaming-on-demand providers can bring down ping to single digits, making cloud gaming suitable for highly competitive multiplayer games like Fortnite.
Cloud gaming boasts unique benefits, making it an attractive alternative to traditional mobile gaming.
Cloud gaming removes device constraints, making any game available on most mobile devices. You can play high-end games on lower-end devices. On top of that, cloud gaming also allows you to play games yet to be released on your mobile device platform.
For instance, you can access games only available on iPhone on your Android smartphone. And it’s click-and-play since you don't need to install the actual game into your smartphone.
Cloud gaming makes games cheaper and more accessible to most mobile gamers. Players pay for subscriptions and access, which is more cost-effective. You can try as many games as possible for a fixed monthly fee. With traditional gaming, you would need to buy each game to play it, which can be very costly.
Although cloud gaming continues to become more popular, it’s unlikely to replace high-end mobile gaming devices in the near future. One of the main reasons for that is convenience and latency.
If players continue to find mobile devices that suit their gaming needs, they’re unlikely to switch to cloud gaming fully. And there is nothing to suggest that isn’t going to be the case. But cloud gaming is set to become the key option for players with low-end mobile devices thanks to its better visual fidelity and higher framerate.