News Article

Gaikai? No, PlayStation Now Is Powered by Black Magic

Posted by Sammy Barker

Seriously, this is impressive

Sony’s done a great job of keeping the PlayStation Now beta under wraps, but videos of the user experience were always going to leak eventually – and this latest clip has made us ponder why the platform holder’s seemingly so eager to keep things secret. It shows a rebellious user faffing about with the streaming service’s PlayStation Store-esque interface, browsing its on-demand library, and performing connection tests.

The clip then goes on to show Japan Studio’s theatrical platformer Puppeteer being booted up from scratch, which takes around 35 seconds according to our count. While that doesn’t seem especially speedy, it’s worth noting that at least half of that time is spent performing further connection tests – something that will probably be optimised in the future. Moreover, after that initial boot, the title appears to play without any further delays. It’s quite magical, really.

While there’s no firm date just yet, the full service is set to deploy in North America this summer, so you should probably expect additional information to be announced at E3. Sadly, there’s no timeframe attached to a European rollout just yet, with the manufacturer pointing out that there are still various problems for it to overcome in this part of the world. Still, wherever you are, you can watch the abovementioned video through here – unfortunately, we can’t embed it on this page.


User Comments (25)



Paranoimia said:

Not really sure why they talk about the internet not being up to scratch in parts of Europe. While it is undoubtedly true, as far as I can tell from people I speak to in the US on social media, parts of America have the exact same issues.

More likely is that it's down to pure logistics and getting enough servers in place to power the service. If that's the case, just say so. It makes more sense than the whole "your internet isn't ready" line, which just seems to be an excuse, when the same issue - some get better broadband than others - is known to exist on both sides of the pond.



charlesnarles said:

@Paranoimia gotta buy a house where the services you want are available or deal with satellite internet (shudders)
My 28mb/s line still can't reliably support my Now beta. Keeps saying quality dipped til it becomes buffer-scrambled and freezes or quits. I hope it's due to the program not my bandwidth because sheesh



italodance said:

Play Station Now is a dead project. Sony should finish this shit ASAP peolpe are buying consoles not free team viewer app.



italodance said:

@charlesnarles are you kidding me? Buy or change the house to solve this instead? Lol Sony will lose its market in every console either PS4 or Vita if doesn't want to make games for them and keep talking about this even at E3 2014.

Peolpe always have other options like Xbox or Wii U.



italodance said:

@get2sammyb Because it needs fast internet and maybe nobody had it at home,you should not just look at yourself or your internet connection you must see other peolpe in around the world.that's why it won't be successful in the world.

Sony must keep releasing games for both of PS4 and Vita instead of wasting time for online projects such as PS Now.look at Vita,Peolpe want to play games everywhere and use it as real portable high-end console,not just at home and front of fast and home internet connection.



ReigningSemtex said:

@italodance people probably said the same about Netflix years ago and other video streaming services and the fact that blockbuster is dead proves that streaming is taking off people's internet around the world is getting better, someone's got to make game streaming properly take off why not Sony?



italodance said:

@ReigningSemtex Well tell me this is Netflix successful in the USA or in the world?

We are talking about the world and only few countries have the fastest internet connections (Specially for high speed on streaming games) in the world,if you happy own that high speed internet connection maybe other guy in other country don't own that same as you.



danny2kd said:

It is a brilliant idea but where I live I doubt my internet could handle it, plus would it be a constant streaming process like when you stream a movie? So buffering issues and each time you load the game would you have to wait for it to load upto the specific point in the game which you are in or will it just skip all that bit and take you to where you need to be?




Dead service is just wrong. It will work. It DOES work. I even tried the service via wifi and it worked well enough. For a Beta it works much better than I anticipated. Netflix had the same exact growing pains and now the service is almost flawless. This is an ingenuous venture for Sony. The biggest factor will be pricing and advertising. Sony must show what the service is and how it may benefit those who may be interested. Servers will continue to be added and the internet will eventually catch up so I don't know why so many are against this. By that reasoning it seems they want the Internet to be perfect first and THEN Sony should launch Now? Growth will happen based on need. Why wait?

Sony is a great games provider. Anyone doubting that is just a hater. But Games are not what it's all about anymore. Consumers want entertainment in all shapes forms and fashions. This is why these companies are all over the place. Sony portraying the focus on games was an intelligent decision. Very strategic. All the time knowing they will introduce multimedia features and apps.



charlesnarles said:

@italodance ISPs send bandwidth over landlines which are expensive to initially install in remote areas. Slow internet and septic tanks are just part of living in the mountains, for example. So yeah, buy a house in a place where people live if you'd like to have a reliable connection.
And I said I get 28 mbs. It's not the internet, it's the beta software



ComicBookGuy said:

@italodance Netflix exists with quite a large user base in over 40 countries. I would say it's an unmitigated success.
There is a difference though. Netflix runs on AWS at DCs all over the world, and in some ISPs too. PS Now will most likely have far more limited hosting initially, but it could work as it starts rolling out across more countries.
I wouldn't write it off; Gaikai seems to have come up with some decent compressions algorithms to minimise the latency. Remains to be seen at scale however.



ReigningSemtex said:

@italodance Netflix is pretty popular in the UK and my Internet is 40mb so I'm not worried. I don't see why the service shouldn't launch for those who have the connection capable of it.



adf86 said:

There's been rumours of some kind emulation with PlayStation games as well, I still believe that there's more to the service than what Sony's told us so far.



Shellybird27 said:

I hate that people b*tch, about how "they're internet isn't good enough", so Sony shouldn't do. My internet is great, and i want this service to release, stop acting like you're the only people in the world. Just Don't get it, don't ruin it for the rest of us.



Savino said:

@italodance Well... I can tell you that Netflix is huge success here in Latin America! So much that they are now making their own content here too. And if we can stream fullhd video in 3D, I fail to see why PSNow wouldnt work great!



bbq_boy said:

@Shellybird27 I must admit that I was one I'd those b*tches when Sony tried to push new tech like downloadable only games on psp go. Sounded silly at the time... but forward to 2014 and I've purchased over 20 psn games on vita in past 3 months (along with a dozen physical games)! I agree with you on this one. I'm excited for PS now, but worry if the pricing is unaffordable and uncompetitive. Internet is here to stay and will grow faster and faster. If people don't like tech moving forward, they can go turn off multiplayer online, go back to crt monitors and go back to dumb mobiles!!



banacheck said:

If people listened you would already know this is a long term plan, just like any other technology these companies make. Think of it as 4K TV, only a select few Will be able to afford it, but in around 10 years from now it'll be in everyone's home much like HD is now. This has always been the case with technology, fiber optic will be the norm.



BlueProxy said:

All I'm saying is you'd better have "blistering fast" internet to us this service.



NathanUC said:

Considering my phone supports a dualshock 3, I cannot wait to try it on mobile. It works very very well from my PS3 already, and my internet isn't anything special in NA.




Zombie_Barioth said:

Well to be fair, most of the Go's problems were with the PSN, not the Go itself.

The problem with the internet isn't that not everyone has a fast enough connection, obviously Sony must think there are enough people for it to be worth the trouble. The problem is the ISPs themselves not wanting to expand and grow. With monopolies like Comcast and Time Warner and how easy the system is for them to manipulate they don't have much incentive to do so.



kingandaval said:

@italodance North America have fast internet. Europe have fast internet. Far Asia (China, Korea, Japan), have fast internet.

These are the markets that matter.

You're over reacting so much.



BertoFlyingFox said:

It'll be good for those with fast internet and no data caps. Only time will tell exactly how well it streams games and at what quality.

I know it isnt for a gamer like me that already owns most of these games in one form or another, but I'm sure there are thousands of Playstation owners who'd rather have a Netflix-style game subscription.

The thing is, there are A LOT of movies (in considerably smaller file sizes) releasing around the world at any given week. Way more than there are games in the PS1/PS2/PS3/PS4/PSP/PSV library. So I'm not sure Sony would be able to sustain enough interest and keep PSNow subs for the long haul, especially if they still cant manage to stream certain games due to whatever ridiculous licensing issues arise.

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