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GameStop's cloud gaming service won't support consoles

GameStop's cloud gaming service won't support consoles

August 16, 2012 | By Eric Caoili

GameStop will begin competing with streaming game companies like Gaikai and OnLive next summer when the retailer launches its own solution -- though it won't support consoles as initially indicated.

Since acquiring streaming technology firm Spawn Labs in early 2011, GameStop has promised that it will have a stake in the burgeoning cloud gaming market. The retailer was previously expected to debut its platform some time this year, with support for both PCs and consoles.

But after a national private beta for the service, GameStop is now looking to target just PCs, tablets, and online-connected TVs when it launches the streaming game solution next year. It's currently in talks with developers and publishers to bring hundreds of games to the platform.

"Based on consumer feedback, our success in selling mobile devices, and the imminent launch of new consoles, we have decided to move our technology to a PC-based model," said GameStop president Tony Bartel during a conference call with investors on Thursday morning.

Just earlier this month, though, Bartel alluded to a number technical and scaling issues with launching the service on consoles, as well as prohibitive investment costs and the lack of commercial opportunities, according to a report from The Verge.

GameStop's retreat from the console game streaming space means less competition for companies like Gaikai, which was recently acquired by Sony; and OnLive, which recently partnered with the makers of Android-based home console Ouya.

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