Will xCloud Game Streaming Burn a Hole in Your Wallet?
While the features revealed by Microsoft in Project xCloud seem to be promising, are they going to be too heavy on your Internet bills?
Streaming a 720p video on Youtube will be quite similar to streaming Gears of War 5 at 720p on your smartphone via xCloud. Designed to run the heavy Xbox One titles on the go at minimum latency on your Android phones (or any device with a screen and a web browser), Project xCloud is a sneak peek at Microsoft’s vision extending beyond living rooms. However, will the data usage remain the same considering the fact that the console’s power moves around in your pocket?
While 720p falls way short of the target set by Stadia (they are aiming for 4K), it’s worth mentioning that none of the platforms have been made available to the consumers just yet. Laying the foundations for higher ambitions, game streaming services are the trending topics in 2019. Questions are bound to be raised over the data usage as this too-good-to-be-true technology nears the first consumer trails beginning late this year.
While the features revealed by Microsoft in Project xCloud seem to be promising, are they going to be too heavy on your Internet bills? Read on to find out! Aiming to stream games at a mere 720p, it seems like Microsoft is focusing more on fluidity and receptiveness rather than popping your eyes out with incredible visuals.
It has been revealed that the xCloud streaming session of 15 minutes amounts to about 600 megabytes (MB) of data, which is almost equal to 2.34 Gigabytes (GB) of data per hour. The data consumed while watching a regular 720p 60Hz video with standard bitrate on YouTube would only be a few steps north (if not south) of the above-mentioned value. In a nutshell, streaming a game on xCloud won’t be any different than streaming a video on Youtube.
With Google Stedia targeting a whopping 4K resolution, the data charges will surge linearly. With the current revelations and leaks, Project xCloud is expected to provide smoother gameplay at a lower cost. Users with strict limitations might find it difficult to cope up with the growing data demand because they will have to stream their long gaming sessions seamlessly.
However, there’s one big advantage with game streaming as you don’t need to update anything time and again (say goodbye to the worst thing in the world called ‘Day 1 Patch’ and other annoying updates). You just need to keep your phone running and rather not the heavy console so your electricity bills will be lighter (because a console does chug a lot of juice from your outlet). Call of Duty Modern Warfare has a whopping 120 GB download size on Xbox One and in such cases, streaming the game would be more economical (remember that you don’t need to update the game every time and popular online games are bound to receive those heavy updates every once in a while with the huge player base demanding more content).
But at the end of the day, nothing would beat the experience ‘turning on the big old Xbox One and sitting on the couch to play Call of Duty till the eyes turn red.