Sony’s acquisition of cloud gaming company Gaikai is a great move on behalf of the Japanese corporation, at least according to a couple of analysts who believe the expertise gained by the purchase will help all of Sony’s various divisions, not just the PlayStation one.
Sony surprised quite a lot of people earlier this week by confirming that it had purchased Gaikai for $380 million (€301 million).
While the corporation confirmed that it was going to debut its own cloud gaming service following this acquisition, industry analysts believe that Gaikai’s expertise is going to be used for all sorts of things
"I think this is ultimately more about the PS4 platform than PS3, although I wouldn't be surprised to see some streaming game demos at least surface in Home and in the PS Store within the next year. I think Sony will hold off on the streaming of AAA games until the PS4 arrives and they can offer some interesting subscription levels," Lewis Ward, IDC research manager, told GamesIndustry
Ward also believes that, after this initial service, Sony could bring cloud gaming support to other devices, from TVs to PlayStation Certified mobile phones.
EEDAR’s Jesse Divnich agrees, saying that the Gaikai acquisition will help Sony as a whole, not just its PlayStation division.
"Without a doubt this was a genius move by Sony. Although they've been doing quite well in video games, as a company Sony has been struggling," the analyst said.
"What the acquisition of Gaikai really does is it helps to future proof Sony, because no matter where the industry transitions, whether we're getting entertainment through Wi-Fi, through a Blu-ray player or discs at the store, it doesn't matter because no matter where technology goes over the next 10 years, they will be able to utilize Gaikai and its technologies to deliver entertainment straight to the consumer."
While cloud services are still in their early stages of development, this move could help Sony establish itself ahead of rivals like Microsoft or Nintendo.
"Obviously there's bandwidth issues, but I don't think anyone would argue with you that cloud won't be the dominant form of entertainment delivery five years from now. It works beautifully now and once we get the bandwidth there - it's more a problem in North America - Sony will be there.
"And this could be theoretically that five years from now, everything literally goes straight to the TV. You don't need a Blu-ray player or a game console; all you need is a TV and it could very well be a Sony TV," he added.
Without a doubt, Sony is looking to use Gaikai’s expertise in all sorts of ways, so it’s going to be interesting to see what the company will announce in the future.