A Google exhibit at the Game Developers Conference in San Francisco on Monday appears to be teasing some sort of hardware related to its widely rumored video game streaming service, albeit with a logo that looks like Doritos and the wifi symbol had a monstrous love child.
A Google representative on site confirmed to Gizmodo that the logo is related to a major event tomorrow where the company will announce its “vision for the future of gaming,” and which Variety reports is suspected to be some sort of streaming hardware for video games. As Variety noted, Google has been testing a Project Stream service that beams Assassin’s Creed: Odyssey to users without an installation requirement since last year, and the magazine found that the company has filed patents that appeared to be related to streaming game controllers. Variety also found that code already running on Chromecast devices includes snippets referencing game-streaming integration.
Variety wrote that Google set up an additional exhibit showing off historical gaming hardware accompanied by an empty display case labeled “Coming Soon”:
The exhibit is a sort of small video game museum featuring a timeline of major moments in video games including displays of Pong, GameBoy, the PlayStation, DreamCast, an Atari 2600 and a display case empty accept for a card that reads “Coming Soon.” One backdrop reads “Together we’ll build a playground for our imagination.” The other reads “Anything you dream can be built.” In between the two is a massive arch with the Google icon at the top and a sort of flattened out “S” suspended inside. A Google employee confirmed that was the new logo for what was set to be announced this week, but declined to say if it was an “S.”
A Google game-streaming box could appeal to users by skipping the need for consumers to purchase high-end hardware to play at high resolutions and detail settings, namely by just letting a server bank handle that for them. However, prior attempts at the technology have run into technical limitations like lag, latency, and buffering. (Beyond that, there’s the obvious problem that users will not be able to game properly unless they have access to a high-speed internet connection that never stalls out, and features like modding would presumably be thrown out the window.)
According to Gizmodo’s sister site Kotaku, various theoretical features floating around in the rumor mill include compatibility across a broad array of devices, Twitch and YouTube integration, and other bells and whistles. As for that appalling logo? Could be worse, I guess.