Google has revealed its intention to enter the video game market by announcing project Yeti, a new console and game subscription service. The internet giant's entry is expected to shake up the industry which is currently dominated by Sony's PlayStation and Microsoft's Xbox, the former already offering such a service via PlayStation Now.
But while the announcement might have caused some to put off their Xbox One X or PlayStation 4 Pro buying plans, it should be noted that Google is planning to develop a "futuristic game-streaming service" first with the console following shortly after.
The company also has not released a timeline for the service's release although it was supposed to be released last year but was delayed for unknown releases. However, they did reveal that it will use faster Internet in 2018 to carry the service which would run similar to PlayStation Now.
Google has hired former PlayStation and Xbox executive Phil Harrison to helm the venture. Harrison announced his hiring on Twitter saying, "Excited to be able to share that today I've started a new role as Vice President and GM of Google - and relocation (back) to California."
Many industry insiders are optimistic about Google's chances of entering this new market. They believe that the company has the edge over competitors by allowing streaming via ChromeCast, at least until they release the Yeti console.
One thing that Google could use to its advantage is to utilize Youtube Gaming as a centerpiece of the service. By releasing a console, the company could deepen its ties to video game streaming by making Youtube into a viable platform for streamers.
This could be done new features such as using voice commands to start, stop, and bookmark recordings and allowing notifications when favorite streamers are going live. Some of these features are already being used by Microsoft with Cortana on the Xbox One so there's no reason why Google can't do the same.
But while the odds of success are good, game streaming is at best a supplementary option for most gamers. Many would still like a good old console to play their games with so until Google manages to put out their own device, Sony and Microsoft's dominance will still be left unchallenged.