Netflix, the global streaming giant, is taking a significant leap into the gaming world. After initial trials in Canada and the U.K., the company has begun testing its cloud gaming service in the U.S. This move is an extension of Netflix’s mobile gaming efforts that started in 2021. As the company ventures deeper into the gaming realm, it’s evident that Netflix is not just about movies and TV shows anymore.
- Netflix is testing its cloud gaming service in the U.S., following trials in Canada and the U.K.
- The service allows members to play games on smart TVs and other TV-connected devices using their mobile phones as controllers.
- Netflix’s venture into cloud gaming competes with other services like Microsoft’s Xbox Cloud Gaming, Nvidia GeForce Now, PlayStation Plus, and Amazon Luna.
- Many of the games are tied to Netflix’s popular shows, with titles related to “Squid Game,” “Wednesday,” and “Black Mirror” in development.
- The company has acquired several gaming studios and established its own internal game studios to bolster its gaming offerings.
A New Era for Netflix
The cloud gaming service is a significant expansion of Netflix’s mobile gaming efforts that began in 2021. The company has been acquiring gaming studios and licensing titles from individual developers, signaling its intention to make gaming a major part of its business. With the new service, Netflix members can play games on smart TVs and TV-connected devices, such as Fire TV, Chromecast, Roku, and more. The unique aspect? Users can utilize their mobile phones as the gaming controller.
A Competitive Landscape
Netflix’s entry into the cloud gaming market sets it against established players like Microsoft’s Xbox Cloud Gaming, Nvidia GeForce Now, PlayStation Plus, and Amazon Luna. However, Netflix has a unique proposition: its games are free with a Netflix subscription. Moreover, many of its games are tied to its most popular shows, creating a synergy between its core streaming service and its new gaming venture.
A Rich Gaming Portfolio
The company is developing games based on hit shows like “Squid Game,” “Wednesday,” and “Black Mirror.” There are also reports of a potential “Grand Theft Auto” game release through a licensing deal with Take-Two Interactive. Netflix has already released games related to popular series such as “Love Is Blind,” “The Queen’s Gambit,” “Stranger Things,” “Narcos,” and more. The gaming lineup also includes puzzles, platformers, card games, strategy games, kids’ games, and more.
Acquisitions and Collaborations
To ramp up its gaming business, Netflix has been on an acquisition spree. The company has acquired studios like Boss Fight Entertainment, Night School Studio, and Finland’s Next Games. Additionally, Netflix has established its own internal game studios, including one in Helsinki led by a former Zynga GM and another in Southern California headed by a former Blizzard Entertainment executive.
The Road Ahead
While Netflix began its gaming journey with a focus on mobile, it’s clear that the company sees cloud gaming as the future. However, critics question whether gaming is the right move for Netflix, especially when apps like TikTok and YouTube are vying for users’ attention. With YouTube recently surpassing Netflix as a top video source for U.S. teens, the streaming giant’s foray into gaming could be a strategic move to reclaim its position.
Netflix’s venture into cloud gaming is a testament to the company’s adaptability and commitment to offering its users diverse entertainment options. As the lines between streaming and gaming continue to blur, it will be interesting to see how Netflix’s gaming service evolves and how it impacts the broader entertainment industry.
For a deeper dive into this development, check out the original article on TechCrunch.
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