Posts Tagged ‘OnLive’

OnLive Adds Wi-Fi Support

Monday, September 20th, 2010

OnLive announced an update to its gaming service, and it is a welcome announcement. It is now offering Wi-Fi gaming.

My earlier attempts at using the service have been for naught. First my T3 “may not be good enough to provide good video quality.” Then, I had to have a wired connection to connect. I pretty much gave up on the service after that, since it was clear it didn’t support my systems. This Wi-Fi announcement has the potential to change things.

“We’re excited to announce that OnLive Wi-Fi Beta is now available for all members. Using the new Wi-Fi Beta feature is easy. Start the OnLive Game Service as you normally do. A message will pop up letting you know you are using Wi-Fi. Just select “Wi-Fi Beta” and that’s it.”

I was able to successfully log in this time, which is a first. I was immediately greeted with an error message about connection speed. I may not have a T3 at home, but I don’t have a slow connection. I did notice some grainy images and video, so I’m not sure what it will take to make the service work correctly. Hopefully you have better luck than I did.

Ideally the Wi-Fi feature means this service can reach more people. Having failed multiple times to actually use the service, I think I’ll stick with console gaming for now.

OnLive Founding Membership Woes

Tuesday, June 29th, 2010

I got my OnLive invitation over the weekend. I had been waiting for it, but not for too long. The email started out like this:

“Congratulations! You have been selected from the wait-list for membership activation and immediate access to the OnLive Game Service.”

I figured this would be a standard test and that I would have something to post about tonight. It turns out I did end up with something to write about, but not in the way I anticipated. I read far enough to get to the registration link and moved on. I didn’t notice the little spec list further down.

Minimum Recommended Requirements:

  • PC: Windows 7 or Vista (32 or 64-bit) or XP (32-bit)
  • Mac: Mac OS X 10.6 or later
  • Processor: Dual-core CPU
  • Screen Resolution: 1280×720 (currently, all OnLive games are HDTV resolution)
  • Internet Connection: Wired (not wireless) 5Mbps connection located inside the contiguous United States
  • Gamepads: Wired Xbox 360-compatible gamepads

I signed in and saw the above image. So far so good. I jumped through all the hoops, signed the agreements, and got ready to install the software.

Things were still looking good, so I clicked install. This is where the trouble began. I got an error message saying I was using the wrong browser. When I think about playing video games, I am inclined to use a lightweight, fast browser. That browser tends to be Google Chrome. I can’t imagine why Chrome wouldn’t be supported, but sure enough, no dice.

I started Firefox, and the process resumes. I download a little file, opened the installer, and I was back in business. Or was I? A window popped up informing me that it was connecting to OnLive. It flashed briefly to upload the latest software, and then went back to the connecting message. It never connected.

Rather than happily exploring the site at this point, I got the following error.

My connection speed is not sufficient for good video quality? I was rather confused by this. I was testing it on a T3 internet connection. T3 isn’t fast enough? I thought that perhaps there was a lag in my connection. I ran a speed test. Sure enough, I was better than okay there.

I tried again and failed. I decided to wait until tonight and try it on my cable modem. That didn’t work either, but at least for a different reason.

I average 15Mbps download speeds at home and use a Wireless N router, so I am not sure why Wi-Fi would be disallowed. This problem isn’t insurmountable, but I have no intention of stringing a cable from my modem to my couch. There is a reason I have Wi-Fi. As I was getting ready to write this post I noticed the recommended settings included above. I used Windows 7 and Vista in my tests, so I passed that hurdle at least. In the case of my morning test though, I still don’t know what went wrong. There was a note about Wi-Fi for tonight’s test. That being said, these are “recommendations”, not requirements, or so they said.

I was really looking forward to posting about how great this new service is. I can’t do that. Instead I am waiting for a response from an e-mail I sent them this afternoon. If I ever get it to work, I’ll let you know. Until then, I guess I’ll just wait and see.

AT&T Offers OnLive Service Free for One Year

Friday, June 18th, 2010

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 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.