POLL — Video games are coming to Netflix. Would you play them?

Story by CBC Kids News • 2021-07-28 13:55

Platform to add games following subscriber decline


Gamers, start filling up those piggy banks! You might want to invest in a better internet connection soon.

Last week, Netflix announced it will offer video games in its existing subscription plans at no extra cost.

It didn't say when that service will launch, but the move comes after Netflix announced its worst slowdown in subscriber growth in eight years.

Netflix officials hope adding games will change that.

”The reason we're doing them is to help the subscription service grow and be more important in people's lives,” Netflix co-CEO Reed Hastings said on July 20.

Netflix will face some competition as a number of companies, including Google and Amazon, have started offering video game streaming in recent years.

What is video game streaming?

Video game streaming is a little different than your regular console gaming.

Also called cloud gaming, video game streaming is a type of online gaming where the game data exists on a server somewhere outside your house and is streamed remotely to your device.

Cloud gaming gives users the option of playing on different types of devices, but may be a bad option for those with sketchy internet speeds. (Image credit: Sean Gallup/Getty Images)

This is different from standard gaming, where the game data is stored on a console (like an Xbox or PlayStation) in your home.

Pros and cons

The good thing about cloud gaming is that games can be played on different devices and require no download times. It also potentially gives users the option to pay less for a wider variety of games.

The big disadvantage is that cloud gaming is super reliant on internet speed, and those with poor Wi-Fi connections may have a poor gaming experience.

Netflix’s plans

Greg Peters, Netflix's chief product officer, said the company will initially focus on mobile games before eventually expanding to consoles and TV.

Although no specific titles have been announced, Netflix said its first games will be tied to its most popular programming, and then stand-alone titles may be added to the mix.

Netflix also suggested that it may eventually create a film or TV series inspired by one of its video games.

The company said video games would be available as part of the standard monthly subscription package. Right now, Canadians pay $14.99 a month for that plan.

Not the first in the game

So, who is Netflix up against in the battle to gain subscribers for video game streaming?

There are more than 100 games available on Google Stadia and the standard membership is $9.99 US per month. (Image credit: Drew Angerer/Getty Images)

In 2019, Google launched its game streaming service Stadia and Apple launched its Apple Arcade — a mobile gaming subscription service — the same year.

Last year, Amazon also jumped on the bandwagon and announced its cloud streaming service Luna, which it says will include 100 games at launch with an introductory price of $5.99 US per month.

Xbox Cloud Gaming, PlayStation Now and GeForce Now are just a few of the other cloud gaming platforms that have launched.

Apple Arcade, another cloud streaming service, has more than 170 games and costs $5.99 a month. (Image credit: Apple)

As the competition mounts, we’ll have to see how Netflix fares and if its move toward gaming will help bring in new subscribers.

That being said, what do you think?


With files from The Associated Press

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