Samsung is warming up to cloud gaming. In a CES 2022 announcement, the company revealed it would integrate three new game-streaming services into its 2022 lineup of smart TVs — a welcome development for the relatively nascent world of cloud gaming.
Samsung said its 2022 smart TVs will be designed with a Smart Hub that features three categories: media, ambient, and gaming. The Gaming Hub lets users tap into any of the video game libraries of GeForce Now, Stadia and Utomik (a cloud gaming competitor that features retro and indie games) allowing users to game without a console or PC.
Samsung said you’ll be able to pair a controller of your choice to the gaming hub, which also connects you to YouTube gaming streamers if you don’t feel like actually playing anything. Notably, Amazon’s Luna and Xbox’ cloud gaming platform were excluded from Samsung’s list, but the company said that the three initial companies were just the beginning of partnerships with cloud gaming services.
Samsung’s official announcement comes a few months after it first teased that it would include cloud gaming into its smart TVs during a Developer Conference keynote. At the October keynote, the company said that the cloud gaming services would run on TVs powered by its Tizen OS.
Different demographic — Samsung’s move follows LG’s decision to incorporate both Stadia and GeForce Now into its latest TVs in January. With two of the biggest TV manufacturers folding cloud gaming into their TVs, the market could gain some much-needed traction. While major companies like Google have entered the market — Stadia launched in late 2019 — the company’s service has yet to see widespread adoption or recognition.
For many, cloud gaming still feels like a less reliable alternative to gaming on a console or PC. Even if it’s technically more convenient for anyone not ready to buy a dedicated piece of gaming hardware, cloud gaming is still hampered by issues like latency, since games are being transmitted to your TV or device from remote servers. While Samsung might not solve issues like latency, it could succeed in targeting a specific demographic of gamers who value the convenience factor of having an all-in-one TV with gaming at the ready.
Worth checking out? — People will be able to try out Samsung’s Gaming Hub later this year as the lineup of 2022 smart TVs hit the market. We’re not saying it’ll come anywhere close to gaming on your console or PC, but it might be worth checking out, especially considering both Samsung and LG have signed on for cloud gaming. Besides, you’re probably not getting your hands on a PS5 anytime soon.