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182

Microsoft's DeLorean might actually make cloud gaming fun

Xbox

The Xbox One you bought might be the last console you ever need to buy. At least if Microsoft's new cloud gaming solution leaves the research labs sooner rather than later. Microsoft Research has just published their work on DeLorean – a speculative execution system for mobile cloud gaming.

Cloud gaming has the potential to make your console (and gaming PC) obsolete. The biggest hurdle to overcome before we reach this gaming utopia is latency. As you probably know, latency is the time interval between an initial input and the output. Latency is normally measured in milliseconds.

Most gamers deem the responsiveness of their game unacceptable when the latency in exceeds the 100ms threshold. Something that isn't that uncommon with most cellular and Wi-Fi networks.

DeLorean is a new system from Microsoft Research that uses speculation to enable low-latency continuous interactions in cloud gaming. Latencies of up to 250ms can be masked by the DeLorean system.

The magic of DeLorean happens when the system produces speculative rendered frames to the gamer. It does this by combining future input prediction, state space subsampling and time shifting, misprediction compensation and bandwidth compensation. If you understand any of this you're going to want to hit up the source below to read their paper that goes into greater detail.

What does this mean for you, dear gamer? It means we might have a future where you can play a twitch shooter like Call of Duty on your Windows tablet. Microsoft has already tested the DeLorean system on Fable 3 and Doom 3. Gamers who played those two games on the cloud preferred DeLorean to other available cloud gaming solution.

Source: Microsoft Research Via: Neowin

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Reader comments

Microsoft's DeLorean might actually make cloud gaming fun

182 Comments

ppl comlain tha Wpcentral post about xbox but for me Wpcentral post about game news before IGN. and i need my gaming news now.

I prefer the monthly subscription model if it gives me access to a bunch of games with it.  Just look at what Netflix and its monthly subscription has done for movies/TV.  It's only a matter of time before someone really does it for gaming.

You mean it requires me to have both TV and Netflix subscription? Netflix is the type of feature that should be available with your TV subscriptions, especially with the $100+ per month people are paying for TV and some movie channels. I think that's what the original commenter was pointing out. It's the nickel and dime... Except nowadays it's measured in 20's and 50's.

To your point. I have RCN here in Boston which just a few months ago put Netflix as a channel though you must have a subscription with Netflix which I had for some years now. I love Netflix and Youtube but wish Youtube didn't sell off to Google who is overloading the site with advertisements.

I'm still surprised that Microsoft didn't end up buying OnLive given Sony's cloud streaming service acquisition.

OnLive sucked though. They promised cheaper games because of no shipping/packaging then the prices ended up being higher than retail. Microsoft then used OnLive's pricing model for their own marketplace :(

I'm pretty sure that the SoftGrid acquisition is all they needed to stream a sandboxed game. As you point out, this is SOOO much more than that.

it will only influence mobile gaming if there will be unlimited bandwith for it. But that probably wont happen until 5g arrives

I don't know if 5G will solve the problem. I read an article about 5G that explained that 5G won't be focusing on speed, only on security and the possibility for more people to connect to the network.

Uh Sam, this console generation will end, it isn't going to last forever. Heck, many said it would only last 4-5 years, just saying.

It depends on how things go.  Technically, if the cloud can be properly utitlized, there won't be a need for a console since the console could exist entirely as a server and transmit to any device with a screen and an internet connection (look at PS Now and how Sony creates a virtual PSOne, PS2, or PS3 to play its games).  So the Xbox One could be the "last" console if Microsoft decides to make it a hub for cloud based gaming, making it's lifespan technically infinite.

We ALL know they'll bring out a new console to use this feature though. Sure the Xbox One could do it, but how are they going to convince us to spend another 3/400 on a new device that's next generation and is all shiny and cool?! The all new Xbox OneDrive, now with no disc and no lag, does everything the old One could do, but now we've added a new thing! Give us your money and soul.

Why bother trying to sell us another $300-400 machine when they can just have us use the device we already have?  Look at how poorly that has gone for Microsoft this time around, where they have gone from neck-in-neck with Sony to being outsold 2:1.  And Microsoft's Xbox franchise isn't the Apple iPhone franchise; there are virtually no profit margins on the hardware and thus Microsoft isn't making money off the console sale itself (or if they are, very little), but rather the sale of services, accessories, and games for their console.  In fact, they actually make signficantly more money on the console sale itself once it is years older, as the price of the parts have come down (even when they are decreasing the price of the console to entice more people into buying it so they can also buy games,services, accessories, etc.).

Imagine that card going into a "next-generation" should there be one.  Sony (or whoever holds the rights to PlayStation at the time, if Sony doesn't remain solvent) is trying to sell people a console for another $400, with the need for all new-accessories, to play the latest and greatest games, while Microsoft says "hey, you know that couple hundred of dollars you already spent on the One? Well guess what, you can keep using that to play those same lastest and greatest games! Or if you don't have one, they're oly $100 now, so that's $300 you can save compared to the competitor!".  There's a definite incentive and edge into making this the last "true console" generation for both Microsoft and Sony.

We're all hypothesising here but good point ! Its all about marketing and advertising because if there's a new PS5 out and its the "latest" thing, why would anyone want to buy the "older" Xbox the "last generation" xbox instead of the brand spanking new PS5. To normal consumers who just want the latest and greatest, they might just buy the PS5 instead. Obviously it would make more sense to buy the Xbox One as the next generation stuff would be able to be played on it, but would normal everyday "non techy" consumers realise that? A mum who goes out to buy her son the latest gaming console might buy the PS5 because its the newest one, and the Xbox One would have already been out for 4-5 years so why would she buy that?  Your point would be the way forward and  is the smartest way to play next generation games, but the smartest way isn't always the way things go. The world is run by money, not necessarily logic. Just to be clear, you make a good point and that would be great if they did what you said. I'd be on board!

Right. Except, I believe MS has come out saying the XB1 actually is a profitable system. Whereas, Sony choosing to go with the expensive and faster RAM set and again having a system that sells at a loss. 

Your theory is flawed. Nobody makes money on the sale of a console, they make money on accessories, games and licenses. They stand to make more money on the sale of a subscription service than the development and sale of a new console.

This sounds awesome. I know when I play my MMO's, a common complaint I hear is about latency, especially if the person is from Australia. It would be nice if this helps folks like those out.

I moved from WoW to Wildstar which is a very fun game it just has a slow start to ease players in because once you get to about level 13-15 it gets much harder. It's heavily action based though so I had to put it down for a bit because I have a newborn and twitch gaming is harder when you have a little one next to you at all times. Hence, while I wait, I am currently on a private server for Star Wars Galaxies which is also fun.

Internet here is pretty terrible relative to the rest of the world, plus we are far away from everything, servers would need to be located in Australia, which I assume they will be. We would also need high speed Internet nation wide, there are still areas that don't even get adsl.

All Microsoft or Google or Facebook or whoever has to do is deliver cheap fast internet to everybody. Gbps should be standard by now

So the way I understand it is, I wont need to buy a GTX 780TI or an i7 4979k because the computing part is done on msft's server. And I would only need to pay like 9.99 for the games o want to play monthly. In sense ita like Netflix?

Pretty much. Everything would be pre-rendered on their cloud servers. The only thing we'll need is a nice display and a controller (keyboard and mouse for me please!) ;)

I'm sure there will be some local GPU rendering required. Starting with the Xbox One makes sense given that they would have a very capable and consistent baseline. Factor this in with DirectX 12 and cloud gaming with being able to, "cluster" Xbox One nodes in the cloud combined with some local rendering and you have a game changer... So to speak.

Do not forget a fat check to your internet provider after you will quickly exceed your monthly allowed data.....

This!

ISPs already complain about data usage as it is for all the video streaming people do. Add real-time game streaming and watch their heads explode.

That is the beauty of this. They aren't streaming the game. What they are doing is so much more mind blowing than that.

They could mitigate the bandwidth requirements significantly through this approach. For example, remote desktop sessions transfer very little data back and forth. They are nothing more than plot points on a predefined map. Obviously, this is more than that but the fundamental principle is the same.

Back to the Future III was the first film I saw in the cinema as a kid. Poor excuse though because I'm sure I also saw it on...... VHS ;)

This. I'm in the middle of a metro area served by Comcast. I couldn't even tell you how many times the Xbox pops up a message saying it lost connection to Xbox Live. Calling them results in a 30-minute up-sell conversation.

Yes. You were. The rest of us read DeLorean and thought of Teletubbies.

Posted via Windows Phone Central App

Yeah...I still prefer to game on MY machines instead of being dependent on subscriptions and third party infrastructures.
I rather pay for my PC and my games and be able to play whenever I want regardless of having internet or not (imagine the ISP cuts it for one of those maintenances that never improve but maintain anything) than to be dependent on a company to have the servers running, an ISP to have the connection I pay for in shape and still have to pay for those stupid subscription services like Xbox Gold or PSN.

I'm kind of sick of this obsession with the damn cloud.

So a game like WoW who's only model is online, and could benefit from it and its 7million active subscriptions at 20/month for one game mocks your 3rd world worries.

WoW is ONE game. 7 millions in a universe of gamers that's far bigger than that is an irrelevant number.
Also, if you could read, you'd notice I didn't say this sort of thing couldn't exist. I just said I don't like it, not find it a good idea as a standard for gaming in the future.
If this benefits the 40 year old virgins playing WoW, great. Let them use the service. Just don't try to force others into these stupid subscriptions and cloud based things when there's no need for them. ;)

It is so much more than an obsession. Once these capabilities ramp up, most will never want to go back. It could mean that the PC master race is accessible for everyone. It may actually redefine it.

"Cloud gaming has the potential to make your console (and gaming PC) obsolete"

If you truly think that, then you know nothing about PC gaming. Cloud will not replace it! One of the main advantages of PC gaming is the ability to modify the game. How are you going to do that if you don't have access to game files?

That's just the PC argument. Now let's look at gaming in general. Why did people bash XBOX One initially? Why did people bash EA's SimCity or Ubisoft's Assassin's Creed 2 (for PC) and similar stuff? IDIOTIC always-online DRM! So if people bash the idiotic DRM then why would anyone think that people would embrace cloud gaming, where there truly would be no way to play offline?

I said it many times and I'll say it again. Keep your silly clouds to yourselves.

Also you can already play COD or whatever on Windows tablets (unless they run useless RT), because they can run DESKTOP applications!

People bash something until it's "fixed" then they bash the fix because suddenly they don't want that too. But that bashing hasn't really seemed to stop gamers from buying things, so the world keeps turning.

Posted via Windows Phone Central App

I don't remember anyone bashing EAs decision to finally add offline mode to Simcity (and if not for the ability to mod the game, we probably would have never proven that EA's initial claims about offline mode being impossible was a load of B$), nor anyone bashing Ubisoft for doing the same with AC2.

Anyway the point is that cloud gaming is fundamentally flawed, because you cannot play offline.

Sure cloud gaming will rise in the future and there will be market for it. It is inevitable, but it will NEVER replace Offline gaming or PC gaming. It is ridiculous to even suggest that.

It's no different than suggesting that Chromebooks are the future and everything else will be obsolete. Ha! Not in a million years! Even if Nutella decides to release a chromebook ripoff it will never replace full offline Windows.

Just like we will never need 650KB memory right? Or not than 720p right? Android devices that whole heartedly need online to be half functional out number non connected tablets and other devices. Wake up its 2014, rise of online always.

Let me guess. You must be some rich American, who lives in a big city and has "Nothing to Hide".

Well not everyone has access to high-speed internet. Not everyone has access to internet at all.

Some people work with files that are 2GB+ in size, will they keep downloading, uploading them every single time they save it? Haha... No.
Even if you do work with small files, not everyone is willing to hand over all their data to some giant corporation.

Also there is much higher chance that your Microsoft account will get banned for something as stupid as a topless photo (which will result in you losing EVERYTHING that was on the cloud, all your purchased apps, emails, etc.), than your hard drive spontaneously combusting.

So yeah cloud is useful, but it is NOT a replacement for offline systems. It is a helpful addition, for SHARING content, not STORING it.

Actually, the cloud IS a replacement for many on-premise systems. It is also employed as an additive solution to improve scale and performance. Those are known as hybrid on-premise / cloud solutions. Some cloud solutions are dedicated and others are using a shared workload model. Enterprise adoption for all of them is and has been on the rise for a long time now. Before it was known as the cloud, Application Service Providers were catering to the same market through hosted workloads. I was working on an internal start-up back in 1999 / 2000 where we had built out one of the largest hosted Exchange environments in the world in partnership with Microsoft. 14 years later, the cloud is many things but one thing is certain - everyone from individual consumers to enterprise and government institutions are using the cloud for everything from permanent storage to disaster recovery using shared and dedicated cloud solutions to hybrid on-premise architectures. Most organizations are also federated between their Active Directory / directory services infrastructure to that of AWS and Azure to name a few. They are REPLACING racks of servers with IaaS, SaaS, etc... They will be able to replace even more of those using tech like this. Will it replace your gaming rig or console with a thin client? It may be able to do that one day but this will use a hybrid on-premise architecture so it will still make sense to have a powerful endpoint with a capable GPU. It will just mean that the gaming experience will be BETTER than what they could achieve without cloud compute.

chromebook ripoff? does lowering the price of something to match a competitor make it a ripoff? last i checked microsoft hasn't released a browser based OS.

"last i checked microsoft hasn't released a browser based OS"

I never said they did. I said even if they decide to release it, it would still not replace full offline windows.

People buy it anyway eh? This must be why Microsoft didn't back off on always online with the Xbox One as well as everything else people were shouting about right? Cause people would have bought it anyway. This must also be why Sony didn't jump on promising that none of those things would be a problem on the ps4. Oh wait. You see, people were shouting about it because this isn't something that can be fixed cause many people just don't want it. Not just us PC gamers either. But, even the large amount of console gamers who won't even let go of physical copies let alone accept cloud gaming as primary. I am not saying there is no market for this at all. I am just saying I don't see it ever replacing consoles and especially PC gaming. But, if Microsoft replaces the Xbox with this, they will have just handed a huge chunk of their customers over to Sony and Valve who are both always trying to find new ways to play games while also trying to maintain the traditional methods.

Think of the cloud and the PC as a symbiotic unit. They are not necessarily replacing one with the other. More than likely, they will leave it up to developers. For those who wish to support offline gameplay, the experience may be diminished by it would be no more than what you are using right now. By integrating the two, they would be able to provide a more immersive and realistic experience that cannot be achieved through a single local gaming rig. I have no doubt that there will continue to be a plethora of publishers who will continue to cater to those who prefer offline local gameplay for years to come. With that said, this has ground breaking potential that could expand gameplay in ways that were not possible before. If you are a gamer, this is good news. It will take time for the rubber to meet the road but when or if it does, you may not want to go back once you try it.

"Think of the cloud and the PC as a symbiotic unit." <snip> "By integrating the two, they would be able to provide a more immersive and realistic experience that cannot be achieved through a single local gaming rig."

You're basically describing an (overhyped) MMO. I never really liked them for various reasons. Sure they are improving, they are trying to add some story to it (like SW:TOR), but they all still feel very "unpolished" and inferior when compared to a good old offline single-player games.

Sure MMOs will continue expanding and they will get better, but so will single player games. There will always be a market for them and they will never be turned into MMOs for no reason. People like to modify their games (PC), people like to keep their saves locally (to be able to trasnfer them to other computers/consoles). There is really NOTHING that cloud could add to single-player games, because they are meant to be an experience for one person. Network has no purpose there. The only thing that cloud can add is savegame storage, but that doesn't mean the game is local/cloud hybrid. Steam uploads savegames to the cloud, but they are all playable offline.

Actually, I'm not talking about an MMO. By solving for the latency issue, they can create a clustered node between a gaming endpoint and cloud compute. This would allow them to target workloads within that cluster where it is most appropriate. More than likely, it will be able to scale dynamically. Lets say that they are able to offload 10% of the physics compute from a gaming endpoint in some of the first games released with this. A 10% increase made the difference between 900p and 1080p for Diablo III with the June dev kit for Xbox One. As workloads decrease on the endpoint, developers will still use 95% - 100% of the console's capability but it will be 110% of what the endpoint would be capable of without cloud compute. As infrastructure and coding improves, the percentage of the workload that can be offloaded will increase. More so, they will be able to add more and more complexity and realism for any genre. For now and into the near future, you will still need a capable rig for GPU low latency processing but clustering exponentially increases local resource availability and it increases the capabilities for a title with more complex physics processing and graphical rendering that isn't latency intensive. This will happen slowly at first but when you imagine the possibilities, it is as close to future proof as it can get. Eventually, 10% offload turns into 12% offload and so forth. Before you know it, the endpoint is at 120% of it's native capacity, then it is 125%, etc... Naturally, it isn't a 1:1 ratio between CPU and GPU workloads but they will be able to incrementally decrease local workloads with cloud compute and either reduce the what is required to run a title or increase fidelity by using 95-100% of what is available through the local endpoint. It is all about load balancing. This has very little, if anything to do with streaming. They may use streaming to deliver sandboxed content to endpoints but this is much more significant than a streaming model in and of itself.

Ok then you're argument is all about improving graphics (or allowing weaker hardware to play games that they couldn't otherwise) by moving some of the rendering process to the server.

Again not everyone is going to prioritise pretty graphics over the convenience of offline play.

Will there be cloud gaming in the future? Sure. Will there be hybrid systems in the future, like you describe? I don't see why not. Will they replace 100% offline games? NO! There will be options. Some games will be exclusive to one type of system, others will be "multi-platform", but the offline games will remain forever.

I'll use the AC2 as an example, before ubisoft removed the always-online DRM. Imagine you bought the game so you would have something to play while you travel. Well it just so happens that you don't have an internet connection in your current location. What are you going to do now? Look at the fancy launcher claiming that you cannot play, because there is no internet connection, while people who got the game from pirate bay are happily playing it offline, laughing at ubisoft? Other times people were unable to play because the servers were "crowded", "on maintenance", "offline". Once again paying customers had nothing, while pirates were enjoying the game.

Since this whole "game was designed to work with the cloud" was a total B$, pirates were able to make it work offline anyway and when people who bought the game had to go to pirate bay themselves just to play the game they PAID FOR, ubisoft eventually decided to remove the always-online DRM and haven't tried it on any other AC title since.

Now imagine if the game was designed to work with the cloud FOR REAL. There would be no pirates coming to rescue paying customers this time. Whether servers are down, or the internet connection is down, or the game is considered "too old" by the publisher and they decide to pull the plug, pirates will be unable to rescue us then, because the game will truly be a cloud hybrid.

These are real problems that many people will not accept, no matter how attractive others claim the cloud is. I wish you cloud lovers would try to see the world from my point of view for once. I understand your position. I understand the benefits of the cloud, but with each benefit there comes a penalty. Some are fine with them, while other will not compromise. This is why cloud will NEVER replace offline games. The two versions will co-exist together.

Sure. I can see that. Personally, I'm not arguing for or against offline gameplay. In this example, they are able to deliver pre-rendered frames to a thin client without adversely affecting gameplay due to latency. When combined with the hybrid cloud model for high performance endpoints, it can either reduce endpoint load or it can be additive but it doesn't necessarily mean that offline gameplay will not be possible for supported titles. As long as there is a market for offline gaming, publishers will continue to cater to that market. Using a hybrid model, they could scale graphical content for high end rigs to provide more content and fidelity but the game could also be played offline without those additive features. For thin clients, most of the load would be cloud intensive but there is no reason that the model wouldn't scale based on the use case. If you can get another year or two out of your gaming rig by using something like this to scale above and beyond the native capabilities, I see that as a nice option to have.

Nvidia Grid works the same way. They host PC games on their servers, and anyone with a Shield tablet or handheld can play anytime they have a decent internet connection. It works really well.

Posted via the Windows Phone Central App for Android

If Nvidia Grid is using predictive algorithms combined with clustered cloud computing to decrease latency and seamlessly provide cloud compute so that the Shield tablet can render the image locally, then it is the same thing. More likely, they are streaming a sandboxed game to the endpoint. If so, it is not the same thing.

One thing is to provide tons of storage for cloud files, but cloud gaming? Lol, the amount of power they will need to satisfy pc gamers in terms of graphic and sound details would be ridiculous, there is no network capable of streaming all that data to a bunch of PC gamers neither, and even if they actually make it work, you'll still get a better experience having your own hardware running it, and it will most likely be cheaper than the 2k dollars bill for that 10tb/s broadband you'll be paying for, for consoles it might work but maybe 2 or 3 years down the road when a cheap laptop can run 4 of those console games in split screen

That is where the cloud work because it is not limited to the number of cores or processors which can be expanded. I believe I read a while back the Xbox will be supported with aprox 300,000 servers. So Microsoft is already in the game on this. But I agree nothing beats offlining because in our real world streaming is not all that great and the ISP are not all that friendly.

Fortunately, this technology isn't based on a streaming model. This requires significantly less bandwidth than streaming does. Streaming is more like a traditional UDP broadcast model. It effectively dumps packets out to the endpoint. There is very little, if any legitimate packet error correction and depends upon compression to optimize the experience. This shifts that model to one that uses active error correction where the endpoint is clustered to that of cloud compute nodes. Workloads are then optimized based on the hybrid cloud / on-premise model. With streaming, there is no inherent load balancing. The servers sends the packets and the endpoint processes them. The game is streamed to a virtual sandbox and the endpoint performs all the workload for processing and GPU rendering. Microsoft intends to use a load balanced model that distributes the workload. By diminishing the workload on the endpoint through cloud compute, you can exponentially increase graphics fidelity and detail on the endpoint and provide incredible scale for those offloaded processes through Azure. Initially, it will be a percentage of what the Xbox One is capable of now. They may be able to increase local workloads by 20% but eventually, that could be 120%, 200%, etc... It is what they have been doing with clustering in the enterprise for some time. All they had to do was solve for the latency problem. If they have done that, this changes everything.

They really don't care about game Graphics Resolution LOL, no thanks if I can't play those games on a 60+ Inch HD Screen + 7.1 Dolby Atmos.

An OnLive version of Xbox? Im sold. Its really time for gaming to join music and movies to be consumed in bulk.

Once it becomes self-aware, it's game over man, game over. But they mostly come out at night. Mostly.

This is heavy. It doesn't say how are we going to be able to find a power source capable of supplying the 1.21GW required to make this work?

That's will be great! Playing heavy games in cloud on tablets and smartphones or old PC's. Like OnLive) Just need high speed internet connection and you're in.

I am very interested in this topic. Given they figure out the technological hurdles in transmission and control, imagine the possibilities. Games not limited by the processing power of your box. The graphics and physics possibilities are endless and only limited by developer imagination. AMD already got the technologies to handle this kind of a processing on the server side. I am excited to see where this goes.

This is the best thing ever!
This would mean...every possible highress game for windowsphone!
(and there are some, like the entire steam Library!)
This would beat the crap out of the ios appstore since there are way more Windows games than ios crapps! :D woehoe microsoft you made the iPhone killer! :D whahahah x{D
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Download it in the appstore. D}':

Its the same concept of watching a 1080 (or even a 4k) video. Your machine can usually handle that easily compared to processing the data required to render it (physics, particles, so on). So this idea is that an outside source does all that heavy lifting and gives your console the data to render it for you. It's sorta like doing long division on paper vs using a calculator. Cool stuff. :)

Finally, someone gets it. It's a similar concept to what they do with Remote Desktop and RemoteFX. They already have the IP to, "stream" a sandboxed game to an endpoint. If you have ever loaded Office 365 through click 2 run, that is using that technology (App-V, App-X). In fact, Windows Phone uses the same sandbox methodology for apps that are installed onto our phones. But when you start talking about offloading compute cycles to cloud resources combined with local GPU rendering to, "paint" the image, it turns into a completely different ballgame. Clustering with targeted workloads has phenomenal potential well beyond that of gaming. This is, beyond the shadow of a doubt, the future.

The magic of DeLorean happens when the system produces speculative rendered frames to the gamer. It does this by combining future input prediction, state space subsampling and time shifting, misprediction compensation and bandwidth compensation.

So, they say they can predict what will be your next action and react to it in advance? Sounds creepy.

Not really. Think about it this way. If you were in a driving game and you were halfway through a turn, predicting your next move isn't that difficult to figure out. Now, factor in the telemetry data for each player. Forza already keeps track of your telemetry (speed, attitude, apex, etc...) so that data can help them accurately predict how you are likely to play the game. Of course, they also have to account for the delta so compensating for a misprediction is part of the algorithm as well. In the near future and with enough data, they could probably predict your lifespan, whether you will marry, how many kids you will have, what you will do for a living and where you will live. They should be paying us for voluntarily wearing health monitors. Regardless, predicting what you do in a game isn't easy but it is just the beginning.

I think it IS difficult even in an example as simple as a racing game. It's not just "hm, he will probably continue to drive along the street" but it's "will he take the turn with the driving wheel (analog stick) turned to the left for 45%? or is it 46%? or will he press the button to look back? will he push the acceleration-button down for 80%? or for 75%?" - there are a million possibilities what i could do next and therefore there are as many "next pictures to send to the player". They will not be able to _exactly_ predict your future moves only from your habits. - Maybe the could say "well, in general he is a pretty good player so he will probably stay on the ideal racing line. We will let him stay on this line in spite of his exact steering, if it's the needed 47% or just 45% to the left" - but that's not really predicting the next move and what I would expect from a game ;-)

You're right. Predictive analysis is really, really difficult. But this is a simplistic example for the fundamental principle. More than likely, the predictions are based on milliseconds of micro-adjustments. The typical reaction time to an event is around 1 second. If they are able to predict your micro-adjustments 90% of the time down to 200 milliseconds, that inherently accounts for a significant portion of latency. Time shifting accounts for the rest with misprediction adjustments being applied for correction. Yes, the actual processing and algorithm to achieve this is profoundly complex. The fundamental principles are less so but still hard to believe.

A year or so ago, they demonstrated this tech using Halo (the full console version) through a Lumia 520 during an employee meeting. Somehow, that was leaked. Either way, I think we can safely say that they plan on using this tech to bolster their platform. I could see them porting it to Android and iOS but it would probably take time. They are almost certainly using low level kernel features that already exist on Windows platforms that do not exist on competing platforms. I could easily see DirectX 12 being a big part of this as well.

Yes I saw that demo. I follow all things Xbox related closely. And this One is shaping up to be quite the machine, I hope sales increase as it more than deserves it and so does the team working to bring us these great experiences.

I'm more excited about this tech than I care to admit. I'm basically an enterprise management geek. I actually bought an Xbox One because of the promise that this holds. I believe that it is the model for what computing will look like in the future. The cross over between enterprise and consumer tech is of particular interest to me. This kind of technology could redefine how we think of computing for the next 10-20 years. I read an article from Sony where their PlayStation VP admitted that he didn't understand how Microsoft is using the cloud. Coming from the Microsoft enterprise space, it is all just a variation on the same theme. I was blown away that they didn't get it. This is so much more than client / server. This even changes that dynamic. Endpoints and cloud compute combined into a clustered node with targeted workloads? That is nothing short of awesome. VDI is all about thin clients. Other computing models load up the client. This uses both. It's the perfect evolution for how platform convergence and distributed workloads will change everything regardless of whether it is in consumers homes or the datacenter. The potential is just astonishing.

"state space subsampling and time shifting" QUICK MARTY WE MUST TRAVEL BACK IN TIME!

Sorry that's what poped into my head when I read that.

I bought a One of the strength of my 360 experience. The fact that its OS is n now similar to my 1520 and that it is reaching to be capable of if not more so things that my phone can do is exciting. Sony has had their cloud service (PS now) in beta for more than two months. And its no more than a streaming service really. I'm not at all surprised by that comment. I would pay hard earned money to have my ONE the way MS originally envisioned. Now we're probably 2-4 years or from that, but services like EA Access are a good start to the future of gaming.
Not sure why but this didn't reply to inlineV above using my phone. :(

This could be a big leap forward for improving the end user experience for any kind of endpoint by distributing load between the client and Azure. The applications include gaming, cloud VDI solutions, RemoteApp / Terminal Services, App-V, etc... They even developed their own compression algorithm to encapsulate pre-rendered frames to clients to deliver consistent gameplay experience on low bandwidth connections. This is the foundation for what's next and it is incredibly exciting.