Google has now announced it will be hosting a keynote at this year’s Game Developers Conference (GDC) in San Francisco.
Google made the confirmation by sending out invites to the event to various media outlets earlier today.
It is currently unclear what the event will highlight although it would seem this year’s Google attendance at the event will carry more weight than in previous years, suggesting it is an event to watch out for. As while Google does routinely attend GDC, it does not usually host a major keynote moment.
What is likely to be at least mentioned at the event, if not the headline act is Google’s Project Stream service.
This seems to be the company’s solution to online game streaming and has been in development for some time. Google even recently teamed up with Ubisoft to highlight the power of Project Stream and showcase what in theory it could offer to users.
Late last year, Google, via Project Stream invited interested gamers to play the latest Assassin's Creed entry, Odyssey in Google's Chrome browser.
The trial was scheduled to run through until January and was completely as expected, suggesting there were no major issues with the public test. This is even more notable considering this was a AAA gaming title as it leads the way for Google to offer a similar experience to gamers with other major game releases going forward.
The invitees to the GDC event that have gone out today reportedly state that “all will be revealed,” which if is in relation to Project Stream could be interpreted as the service is now ready for more of a mainstream outing. Considering this is a developer-focused event, Google will at the very least be appealing to third-party developers to jump onboard and start including Project Stream in their rollout plans.
Either way it would mark a fairly significant milestone in the arrival of Project Stream.
On a related note, Google might not be the only one making an announcement like this soon as reports have also circulated suggesting Amazon is currently working on its own solution that’s expected to launch as a direct competitor to Google’s Project Stream.
Both Amazon and Google will draw on their respective cloud infrastructures to underpin their game streaming services and as a means to overcome many of the typical hurdles associated with game streaming.
However, if Google’s GDC keynote is for Project Stream, it may prove to be an important distinction between the two as Amazon’s option is reportedly still in an early stage of development. The current expectation is it won’t arrive to market until 2020 and being the first of the two to arrive to market could be an edge for Google.
Of course, this will only be in the sense of Google and Amazon as both will still need to compete with the more gamer-focused companies who already provide some form of online game streaming experience, including both NVIDIA and Sony - via its PlayStation arm. In addition to the other major gaming names, including Microsoft, who are also expected to launch a game streaming service soon enough.
This year’s GDC event is due to take place between Monday, March 18 and Friday, March 22 with Google’s event now scheduled for 10AM PDT on Tuesday, March 19th.