What is Cloud Gaming?

a picture of a couple playing video games

Ever been frustrated because your PC didn’t pack enough power to let you fully enjoy the latest games? Or have you hungered for a bigger library of new titles, but hate having to meet hardware specs or deal with pricey game catalogs? Cloud gaming could be the solution you’ve been hunting for.

Cloud gaming uses the power of data center computer servers to run games smoothly, then transports that experience to your device using the internet.  It’s sort of like the gaming equivalent of streaming Netflix. The game is running somewhere else, but it won’t feel like it.

That means you don’t necessarily need a new Xbox Series XPlayStation 5, or computer with a high-end graphics card to get the best graphics and performance for modern games. With a good internet plan for gaming, you can play using a much wider range of hardware and devices. For example, you can:

  • tap into games using any PC or Mac laptop
  • use a phone clip to play the latest AAA games on your smartphone
  • boot up a cloud gaming app on a Chromebook or tablet
  • enjoy big-screen gaming via cloud gaming apps on popular smart TVs

How do you play games from the cloud?

Another benefit of cloud gaming: sometimes you can use a subscription to access cloud gaming content. Rather than having to buy each game individually, you’ll immediately have access to a large catalogue of games as soon as you sign up for a service. Alternatively, you’ll use a cloud gaming service platform to get access to high-performance hardware, and then buy games via digital storefronts like Steam which are linked to the cloud gaming provider’s platform. Both might be good options, depending on your needs and circumstances.

Here are some popular examples:

  • Amazon Luna. This is Amazon’s cloud gaming service. One perk here is that Prime subscribers get some free games included with their membership. There are also premium plans available that provide many popular titles.
  • NVIDIA GeForce NOW. NVIDIA is a trusted expert in gaming hardware, so they’re a dependable name when it comes to performance. This service will make you feel like you’re gaming on the most cutting-edge hardware available. 
  • Xbox Cloud Gaming. The Xbox game catalog includes many titles you probably know and love — including popular franchises such as Halo, Fortnite, Assassin’s Creed, Battlefield, Batman, and more.

Is Fiber internet good for gaming?

Yes, it is. Unlike cable, fiber internet delivers symmetrical upload and download speeds. This is important because cloud gaming is a two-way data street. Your inputs travel to the server, and the server sends back a video stream. Your download speed will help you receive updates smoothly, but you’ll also need a high upload speed to send updates smoothly. If you have a low upload speed, that can slow things down considerably.

To learn more about the advantages of using fiber for gaming, you might also want to check out this article.

This article is AT&T sponsored content written by Robert Rivenbark, an AT&T contractor and a TechBuzz contributor. The statements in this article are his own and don’t necessarily represent the positions, strategies, or opinions of AT&T.


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