Sony Computer Entertainment has bought the cloud gaming service Gaikai for $380 million. Sony’s previous cloud service was functional, but didn’t revitalize Sony’s electronics front as much as Sony Computer Entertainment’s president Andrew House hoped. With the acquisition of Gaikai, Sony believes that graphically intensive and casual games can be enjoyed from electronic devices, as well as help push sales of the PS Vita. After the replacement of Kazua Hirai, rumors that a new upgrade to Sony’s streaming service began to surface, and that Hirai had been overseeing relations and transactions with Gaikai. Of course now these rumors have been to put to bed, but the question of Sony’s lagging electronics front’s fate has yet to be answered.
Sony hopes that the Gaikai acquisition will offer competition against OnLive, a game streaming service, and push more sales of the PS Vita. Sony promises that its new service will be compatible with other manufacturers’ devices, and will be the solution to the Xperia Play failure. The Gaikai acquisition offers new hope as well, with the possibilities endless. One can see the new service bundled with phones and tablets, along with higher-end televisions. Gaikai can also be offered as an additional service to those who own PlayStation consoles, and paired with the compatibility of other manufacturers, the PlayStation’s reach will stretch on over to phones and tablets.
If Sony plays their cards right once the transaction has been formally concluded, the entire gaming market can change. Cloud gaming can increase in popularity if it becomes more approachable to casual gamers, which can happen if provided through an intuitive streaming service. This would also sell consoles and electronics, and help Sony have a better share in the tablet/phone/portable market. Not only that, this service can benefit those with other devices while also selling the PlayStation brand. But like I said, that can only happen if Sony plays their cards right, or we might see another flop.