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March 10, 2010


Mr Tom

I remain completely unconvinced.


I too am unconvinced. The economic and technical issues on their side are significant: that $15 a month would have to pay for the hardware equivalent of an Xbox360, their magical-instant-video-compressing equipment and a fat pipe *for one player.* How much lag can the service afford to have? None, essentially. They can't afford to have any interruptions, either; even a half-second pause could ruin action-game play. Have a couple of those in a single session and you'd give up on the service. Future proof? Only if the plug-in will always run on the current versions of web browsers and operating systems, forever (which seems unlikely.)
From the customer perspective, over the long term it's actually cheaper to buy a current-gen console every time one comes out (plus the online service for the console) than to pay for this service. Since any actual content, like movies or games, are beyond that monthly charge, the games, as you say, would have to be pretty darn cheap to bring people in. Currently the only people I see enthused about the service are those who mistakenly believe the $15 includes unlimited games.

On the other hand, if it *did* work, technically speaking, why would publishers like Ubisoft release on any other platform (despite the low-resolution)? As you point out, it cuts out all the things publishers complain about that reduce (theoretical) sales.

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