Rumor: Google Developing Android-Powered Game Console

Rumor: Google Developing Android-Powered Game Console

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Google is reportedly developing an Android-powered game console to do battle with expected similar devices from Apple.

The Android console market could become a whole lot more crowded in the relatively near future, as Google is reportedly hard at work on its very own gaming system. The unit is being developed in response to rumblings of a console being developed by Apple that would bring iOS software to the living room.

Developing a console to battle for market share against a unit that doesn't actually exist may sound silly, but its audience is potentially huge and almost entirely untapped. Assuming that a Google console would come in reasonably close in pricing to Ouya and the as-yet-unreleased Gamestick, it would be a fraction of the price of the Xbox One and PlayStation 4 but still have big-name muscle behind it, and perhaps even more importantly would offer wildly inexpensive (and often free) gaming to people who don't consider themselves gamers but wouldn't mind getting some of that Candy Crush action on the couch.

Google is also far better positioned to make a meaningful push into the console market than other Android-based devices; Ouya went over big with gamers on Kickstarter but has struggled to meet demand. If it can build these things in sufficient quantities and sell them cheaply enough - both of which should be relatively simple matters - Google could very suddenly become a big player in the console game, perhaps not a direct threat to Sony or Microsoft but very possibly a real headache for Nintendo.

Google is also apparently working on a new version of the unreleased Nexus Q media streaming device. The company declined to comment but a source said one of the two could be released to the public as soon as this fall.

Source: Wall Street Journal

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While it is not entirely unexpected considering how large phone/tablet/Android/iOS games are becoming, I feel so sorry for the poor Ouya developers. It doesn't stand a chance if Google decides to make an Android console. They can put so much more time, money and people into making one it's not even a competition.

Weird, I just read this rumor 10 minutes ago while looking up things about the new Key Lime Pie Android OS. The rumor is that the os could could make a more unified android experience across phones, tablets, android mini pc's and android consoles by making the user interface work better on tv's and lowering the system requirements so it'll work on lower end devices too.

All in all, I'd really like to see Google put their foot in the console race. I wonder how many years until Google can make an android device with specs that rival the ps4 and xbox one?

PoolCleaningRobot:
I wonder how many years until Google can make an android device with specs that rival the ps4 and xbox one?

Not many, mobile chips are growing in power exponentially. Their development is far faster than average PC style processors at the moment, they are making jumps in as much as 10x the power every iteration with a shorter development and release schedule than PC chips although GPUs might be developing nearly as fast. The ARM 8x Core Mali T-600 series can run desktop software at 1080p and beyond already, some estimates place mobile CPUs and GPUs as little as six years behind PC tech.

Within the life time of the PS4 and XBone mobile GPUs and CPUs should catch up at least, its not the simple of course the way the chips architecture works is a little beyond me. I know the broad strokes and the way they apply to the devices they power, thats just par for the course as a tech junkie but a programmer or expert enthusiast would need to explain the ins and outs.

Good god, it's going to be like back in the 80's when there appeared to be more consoles than games being released. This, Steambox, Apple's console, Ouya, the 3 main systems, laptops, tablets, and all the other obscure systems in-between.

Because the market isn't already becoming overly saturated by a vast number of consoles, that are all showing up at the same time.

Terramax:
Good god, it's going to be like back in the 80's when there appeared to be more consoles than games being released. This, Steambox, Apple's console, Ouya, the 3 main systems, laptops, tablets, and all the other obscure systems in-between.

That's exactly what I thought when I read the headline.

Only this time we have three established manufacturers and a load of companies of varying size that provide very similiar systems with a very similiar library. Last time, we only had very similiar systems that copied each others games recklessly. While the big ones will hardly mind, the Android based systems will cannibalize each other. Besides, Blaze and nVidia work on their own Android gaming systems right now as well.

I'm pretty sure this fad will die off very quickly, leaving a lot of broken dreams and bankruptcies behind.

For those who're too young to know about the video game crash of 1983:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/North_American_video_game_crash_of_1983

J Tyran:

PoolCleaningRobot:
I wonder how many years until Google can make an android device with specs that rival the ps4 and xbox one?

Not many, mobile chips are growing in power exponentially. Their development is far faster than average PC style processors at the moment, they are making jumps in as much as 10x the power every iteration with a shorter development and release schedule than PC chips although GPUs might be developing nearly as fast. The ARM 8x Core Mali T-600 series can run desktop software at 1080p and beyond already, some estimates place mobile CPUs and GPUs as little as six years behind PC tech.

Hard to say. The reason ARM tech has jumped massively is that they've been skipping die shrink generations and the newest ones are mostly using the size process size as AMD's new shit (28nm)... although AMD are hoping the new 20nm process will hit production soon because the 28nm stuff has been a pain in the arse for their CPUs. Thing is, even if ARM does make up the tech divide, the small size of ARM devices restricts their power for several reasons.

However, that being said, if Google decide they want the Android Game Console, they're going to get one. They'll probably do it the way they've done it with other Android devices - let whoever wants to make one go for it as well as having someone build a 'reference model' line. The only question then would be who'd line up behind Google to make them. A real coup for Android would be Samsung building the console into a line of smart tvs... although with Samsung it'd probably be part of a wider built in entertainment/media suite. From Samsung's POV, why not build them in if they're going to put Android everything else into the tvs? I wouldn't be surprised to see nVidia involved in some way with the reference model line...

Within the life time of the PS4 and XBone mobile GPUs and CPUs should catch up at least

Oh yeah, roughly mid-gen (assuming the stated desire for a 10 year gen), the cutting edge ARM devices will be on an equal footing with the new console gen... and if the consoles stayed PowerPC instead of going x86-64, they'd have maybe 2 years not 5. That's the problem inherent with a console - there's no market push to continually develope new hardware so they're in a bad position, tech-wise, against aggressively advancing tech based devices.

The 5 year estimate also assumes there isn't a major push to do something unexpected with ARM tech for gaming... with the most obvious being doing something like throwing a few quadcore ARM CPUs together in the one unit and getting them to cooperate nicely.

RhombusHatesYou:

J Tyran:

PoolCleaningRobot:
I wonder how many years until Google can make an android device with specs that rival the ps4 and xbox one?

Not many, mobile chips are growing in power exponentially. Their development is far faster than average PC style processors at the moment, they are making jumps in as much as 10x the power every iteration with a shorter development and release schedule than PC chips although GPUs might be developing nearly as fast. The ARM 8x Core Mali T-600 series can run desktop software at 1080p and beyond already, some estimates place mobile CPUs and GPUs as little as six years behind PC tech.

Hard to say. The reason ARM tech has jumped massively is that they've been skipping die shrink generations and the newest ones are mostly using the size process size as AMD's new shit (28nm)... although AMD are hoping the new 20nm process will hit production soon because the 28nm stuff has been a pain in the arse for their CPUs. Thing is, even if ARM does make up the tech divide, the small size of ARM devices restricts their power for several reasons.

However, that being said, if Google decide they want the Android Game Console, they're going to get one. They'll probably do it the way they've done it with other Android devices - let whoever wants to make one go for it as well as having someone build a 'reference model' line. The only question then would be who'd line up behind Google to make them. A real coup for Android would be Samsung building the console into a line of smart tvs... although with Samsung it'd probably be part of a wider built in entertainment/media suite. From Samsung's POV, why not build them in if they're going to put Android everything else into the tvs? I wouldn't be surprised to see nVidia involved in some way with the reference model line...

Within the life time of the PS4 and XBone mobile GPUs and CPUs should catch up at least

Oh yeah, roughly mid-gen (assuming the stated desire for a 10 year gen), the cutting edge ARM devices will be on an equal footing with the new console gen... and if the consoles stayed PowerPC instead of going x86-64, they'd have maybe 2 years not 5. That's the problem inherent with a console - there's no market push to continually develope new hardware so they're in a bad position, tech-wise, against aggressively advancing tech based devices.

The 5 year estimate also assumes there isn't a major push to do something unexpected with ARM tech for gaming... with the most obvious being doing something like throwing a few quadcore ARM CPUs together in the one unit and getting them to cooperate nicely.

The competition with the mobile chips really drives it too, ARM are clearly ahead at the moment but Nvidia are pulling out all the stops with the Tegra line GPU wise and Qualcomm are ever snapping at the heels off ARMs CPU line. Thats the most interesting thing, with so many mobile devices at so many price ranges chip development is varied.

I think if you take your two year estimate we may even see chips catching up the Wii U by then, there is a second option as well. The ultra low power Intel i series chips like in the Lenova IdeaPad ultrabooks might be an alternative source of competition, either way its exciting to see the way development is racing ahead.

Smart TVs with built in console gaming would be sweet although I can see uptake being very slow, HD still has room to spread and not many people have smart TVs. Consumers would rather have the illusion of buying a 1400 TV with a 400 console and think each is cheaper than spending 1800 on something integrated, they would have to offer such TVs at several price points too. Still it would make the XBone look sad, smart TVs have better media features than the XBone and they have motion controls. Having built in gaming functionality that matches consoles would really be the single living room device, the idea of Google glass being the HUD for games with just the environment on display makes me giddy.

Why would you even need. Console for this type of gaming? Given the size, price and overall usage of these things wouldn't it be better to simply hand out an Android OS for televisions that's supports Apps and gaming, it let the TV makers spit out the hardware? Just like Netflix and Amazon etc do? Simply give them a cheap way to build it into the retail televisions.

Pretty sure my Android contract granted Google a healthy portion of my immortal soul already, so... why not? Might as well have them invested in my hobby as well as my afterlife.

At this point, is anyone not making an android-based games console? I wouldn't be suprised to hear the Vatican is developing the Jebus-station.

I am always happy to see a new player enter the console market, especially as Nintendo don't seem interested in actually competing with Microsoft or Sony any more, but I would rather see someone come in at the hi-spec end of the market where things really need a shake up.

we already have a andoird based console. it was a failure.
also we already got plenty off devices that run everything android. what would be better if they made the android actually costumizable (not pretend it is untill you crack it down into pieces and then glue back whats needed only). i mean for gods sake my phone came with a facebook app and i needed to dissasemble the android OS just to delete it. how hard can it be to make them seperate entities that are deletable?

as for this rumor. aboslutely no substancial evidence so far. even if they are, not going to come soon so whats the point in speculation? besides, its not liek android has many games you would want to be playing on your console to begin with.

Capcha: weakest link

 

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