We have had quite a year for technology, Apple once again have taken the limelight with the iPad and iPhone 4 and probably most impressively the new MacBook Air. This christmas though we’ve heard non stop about the Xbox and its motion sensor Kinect system, dubbed as gaming without a controller.
I want to talk about some of the things you may not have seen this year and what may be happening of the next 2-5 years. Google released the Google TV package earlier in October this year, which basically brought together their Android operating system, the internet and the television hoping to revolutionise the way we watch television, and experience the internet in our homes.
Apple have attempted this already with the Apple TV, proving to be to a bit to limited, restricting users to iTunes and selected video websites. Sony are almost there with the PS3, a full web browser with divX and Flash abilities is available along with BBC iPlayer, 4OD, ITV Player and LoveFilm Apps, although all experience huge OS crashes and Bug issues.
I am most interested with the development of OnLive, which is basically a pay as you go cloud gaming console. Although only properly available in the U.S. at the moment users are invited to play a handful of decent gaming titles over a server. So no high end spec PC’s or games consoles are required, all the jazz is done on the server end. I have downloaded it for the Mac and played the demos (can’t buy anything as its only is U.S. Dollars at the moment) and it works very well. In the U.S. they have brought out a micro console and games controller which they hope to bring to Europe in 2011.
I think OnLive could be great, however the games industry are reluctant to jump on board due to it being an unknown platform. Dominance in the games console market is met by getting the bigger games titles on board and fast.
My prediction is then that Apple will either clone the OnLive system or buy it out and integrate it in the Apple TV system. With all the good work they have done in the App store with games, and the success of iPhone and iPad gaming must lead to Apples step into the Gaming hardware industry.