Cloud gaming has become a new way to share experiences across the Web, but, unlike traditional gaming, allows individuals to make a move in a Chess game, for example, without being present at the time that a chess opponent (or race game rival) is present within the game
At the same time, however, Wi-Fi networks and LTE data connections can be spotty in places, superb in others, and downright awful or missing in others. This means that the cloud gaming experience, as is Google’s Chromebook, vulnerable to network latencies such as slowness that results in delayed game moves or missing game moves altogether. The same can be said for instant messenger situations in chat applications. If you’ve ever had a Facebook comment you made to a friend (or a status, for that matter) that never appeared within your Facebook conversation, you’ll know the problems with cloud applications firsthand.
If cloud gaming wants to become more of an effective social experience, it must improve in performance because that is the only way cloud gaming will entice more cloud gamers and grow its user base.
Microsoft Research has published some work on cloud gaming and its Internet network latencies as of late. The work, titled Using Speculation to Enable Low-Latency Continuous Interaction for Cloud Gaming, seeks to show how using a strategy known as the DeLorean execution system can not only predict the next move of a player (future input prediction), but can compensate for a prediction gone wrong (misprediction compensation) as well as compress bandwidth (a strategy currently within Google Chrome).
The study goes on to show that most Internet network processes consume as high as 600ms when a user is on Wi-Fi, whereas most individuals will abandon cloud gaming if a feature takes any amount of time over 100ms. The need to retain user engagement and attention makes this cloud gaming study an important one. The fact that this study was done by Microsoft’s Research lab shows that the Redmond developers are looking to improve its Xbox One gaming experience. The company was criticized a year ago at E3 2013 when it announced that the Xbox One would require a daily cloud gaming “check-in” before an individual would be granted access to his or her cloud-based games.