AT&T Offers OnLive Service Free for One Year

OnLive, in cooperation with AT&T, is offering a free 1-year membership to its gaming service. What is OnLive?

OnLive provides the world’s highest performance Games On Demand service, instantly delivering the latest high-end titles over home broadband Internet to the TV and entry-level PCs and Macintosh computers.
OnLive.com

OnLive is marketing its services as cloud-based gaming across multiple platforms. Because the game itself resides in the cloud, you won’t have to download upgrades. You just sign in and start playing.

Here’s how it works:

  • Connect to OnLive with your TV, PC or Mac or TV and play games instantly
  • Games run over the Internet from OnLive’s game data centers
  • Controller action and game play are relayed up and down the Internet at high speeds
  • Enjoy instant game play on your PC, Mac or TV. No high-priced console required

OnLive is advertising access to hot games, not just refurbished oldies. On the list are Batman: Arkham Asylum, Assassin’s Creed II, Mass Effect 2, and Prince of Persia, to name a few. There are a number of games already available, and a number of new games on deck, including Assassin’s Creed: Brotherhood.

OnLive was founded by Steve Perlman, of WebTV and Quicktime fame. Perlman woked with Rearden and subsidiary Mova, where it was developed for 7 years prior to being announced in March of 2009. It was scheduled for launch yesterday, but the trial membership is still taking Waiting List requests.

OnLive is compatible with Xbox-type controllers, but a driver must be installed from an Internet Explorer browser first. That is a little annoying, but with Microsoft, what can you really do?

The OnLive TV adapter features HDMI output, as well as component, stereo audio, S/PDIF optical outputs. There is a USB input in the front and an ethernet jack in the back. The adapter can support four wireless controllers, multiple bluetooth headsets, a keyboard and mouse, and a USB controller.

This looks like a really good service. Hopefully this doesn’t turn out to be before its time like WebTV did. I think this can be a valuable service. I signed up for the free one-year membership. Signups are available through July 15, so be sure to do it quickly if you are so inclined. Important to note, however, is that free membership does not equal free games. You will still need to buy the titles you play. AT&T has a signup form and more information about the subscription terms here.

If you like network-based gaming on your console, this should be a familiar system. Games, convenience, and cool factor aside, the free trial membership makes this definitely worth checking out.

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