So you may have seen the news circulating around the web. Well I can confirm, I was there, and I heard her say it. Nanea Rivers, Chief Strategy Officer for Game Streaming company Gakai said that one of the major console makers was dropping out.
I’ve heard a few interpretations of her comments, and I must admit that my notes and memories aren’t complete. My original interpretation was that she meant that this generation, one of the big three would bite the dust. However, I’ve seen other people who are itnerpreting her statements as, “Someone will be announcing they are pulling out of gaming this gen” or that they “will be moving to cloud gaming.” The rumor mill seems to suggest we’ll see this at E3.
Now, looking back on her statements, I can see where you could come up with these ideas, and they are viable interpretations of her statements. However, there’s some major differences, one is speculation, “some won’t make it this gen” and one is her giving us inside knowledge, “Someone will announce Change X at E3″. I think the former is more likely, but still, the possibilities of the second are interesting to contemplate.
As it is, we know it won’t be Nintendo as their console offering is already out there, and I’ve played it twice. It’s definitely coming, and it has an optical drive. True, that doesn’t preclude the possibility of cloud gaming, but Nintendo has never been the one for embracing the internet on ther consoles. They still don’t have an online gaming platform approaching anything like PSN, much less Xbox Live.
So the obvious contenders are Microsoft and Sony, neither of which has officially announced anything yet. There are good cases for both. The rumors swirling around Microsoft make it all but certain we’ll see their next gen announced at E3. They have also been making big pushes on all of their platforms towards cloud computing. Add to this recent rumors that the NeXtbox may be tablet based, and you have a very compelling case.
However, there’s also a case for Sony as well. They were late to last gen, fell behind, and are only now beginning to catch up. They need an ace in the hole fast, but if they are to believed, they have no plans to announce PS4 at E3. However, could this simply be misleading? Could they actually be intending to go into next gen at E3, but without a PS4? What’s to stop them from updating to PS4 to run a cloud app, or begin integrating their cloud solution into their TV’s and Blu-Ray players? Suddenly you have next-gen, without the need for new hardware. An interesting idea wouldn’t you say?
Of course, this is all contigent on what Nanea really meant with her statements, and whether she really know what she thinks she does. She seemed pretty confident when she said it, but she refused to elaborate at the time. I guess we’ll have to wait until E3 this year. This will definitely be the most interesting E3 in a LONG time.