The global online gaming market is projected to grow from an estimated $1.72 trillion in 2015 to $2.2 trillion by 2021. Gaming studios are shifting from delivering games for fixed machines to Cloud-based systems. This offers gamers a chance to play multiple games at a time and helps companies pocket more revenue.
Cloud gaming refers to a system where games installed and running on remote servers are streamed directly to a user’s device. In traditional gaming, a game runs on a user’s video game console, PC or mobile device. Cloud gaming obviates the need to install and update games.
“Public Cloud is no longer a thing of the big corporations. The overall popularity of Cloud services has increased tremendously due to the benefits, especially among individual users. However, selection of a Cloud service provider has to be made after a critical assessment of many factors and comparing the pros and cons of the existing service providers,” said Mandar Navare, CEO, Flentas Technologies, a Cloud consulting company.
Here are some of the key pointers to consider before choosing the Cloud service provider for your online gaming company.
First things first. For any company, the cost has to be taken into consideration. Since the major reason behind shifting to Cloud is to save cost, it is important to evaluate your budget beforehand, check with the service providers on all the additional charges and make an informed decision. Cloud providers charge a monthly or an annual subscription fee for the service. Once you select the cloud provider, it is better to go for an annual subscription to save cost.
Since online gaming is still a fledgling industry, it’s imperative to have a strong ecosystem for successful Cloud adoption. “Many public Cloud companies have similar offerings and services, so it’s important to understand the overall focus areas of public Cloud companies and if online gaming fits in their vision,” said Navare.
Get the numbers right
CIOs point out that Cloud brings in a lot of hidden costs. “The trick lies in right-sizing, which is considered the most effective way to control Cloud cost, and understanding the actual Cloud TCO depending on what and where you’re migrating,” Amit Gupta, Founder and CEO, Rapyder Cloud Solutions. Plan for real-world usage and achieve optimal performance of your infrastructure/applications at the lowest possible price, Gupta added.
Security remains a top concern for decision-makers in any company moving to the Cloud. Data breaches can be detrimental. So, choosing a provider that offers the highest level of protection, such as encryption, monitoring, visibility and compliance requirements is key.
Ensure the Cloud provider has a global content delivery network (CDN) in place. “For any multiplayer online game, it is imperative to have a robust solution for content delivery, as gamers consume a huge amount of content while playing online games,” said Navare.
Cloud providers with strong analytics capabilities offer a huge advantage. “Data processing and analysing is an integral part of any industry. It is used to facilitate and control multiple aspects of the business. So if we are to question the role of data analysis in the gaming industry, it will play a pivotal role in understanding and shaping the gaming industry,” said Tarun Gupta, Founder, Ultimate Battle, an online esports platform.
As you grow, it is important that you are able to meet the increasing demands. So, it is pertinent to look for providers who can help you scale quickly as and when the need arises. The Cloud solution should be able to respond to increased storage and performance demands quickly and cost-effectively.
The credibility of Cloud providers takes a hit when there are service failures. Service outage can seriously impact your system, data and applications. For online gamers, uptime is a key factor. Aftersales, customer support and quick remediation are factors you should consider before choosing the cloud partner.
Be with the right partner
Cloud migration requirements vary depending on the scale and scope of your project. If you’re planning to use your internal IT resources for migration, you may want to upskill the team to effectively manage the transition, which requires training and time. “So it is wiser to engage the right Cloud partner to smoothen this transition. Remember that a failed Cloud migration attempt can cost you dearly in a disrupted marketplace. Being with the right partner can ensure critical aspects like timeliness, controlled cost and optimal outcome,” said Gupta.