Google announced yesterday that they are commencing service testing for their brand new Project Stream. Project Stream aims to deliver high-quality games within Google’s Chrome browser with minimal latency. Processing the game in a separate location, Project Stream brings the finished, rendered game directly to the player. Just like with Movies or TV, all that is required is an internet connection. In order to properly test Project Stream, Google is collaborating with Ubisoft to run Assassin’s Creed: Odyssey. Ubisoft’s latest in the Assassin’s Creed series launches this Thursday and is a fantastic AAA title for Project Stream. With gorgeous visual design and high-end graphical requirements, Odyssey pushes Project Stream to the limit.
While the game is playable within the Chrome browser, the digital process is done in a separate location. Whereas an Xbox or PC would render the game and directly feed it to the player’s screen, Project Stream adds in a middle man and streams the game. This saves up physical space and hopefully enable video game streaming services similar to Netflix or Stan. The biggest issue that is currently hurting video game streaming as an in-development concept is latency. Project Stream looks to properly test the games and services with real consumers in order to understand and minimise latency.
“When streaming TV or movies, consumers are comfortable with a few seconds of buffering at the start, but streaming high-quality games requires latency measured in milliseconds, with no graphic degradation,” says Catherine Hsiao, Product Manager.
Project Stream is open to the public. However, spots are limited and it is only available to the US. Project Stream is geared toward home internet connections capable of 25 megabits per second. Australia’s National Broadband Network for comparison does not meet these requirements on the basic level, only customers with NBN Tier 25 and above. The need for high-speed internet, relative to the global internet speeds, is not only a problem for Project Stream but video game streaming in general. While Google is now testing and optimising their service, video game streaming is still years away.