There are a few big companies about right now who really want to let you play PC games through the screen and inputs of another device – if only you’re willing to pay a subscription, or buy their box, or wait for your bandwidth to catch up.
Of those, Amazon’s PC game streaming dongle is most exciting through merit of being new and unknown – but progress on Steam’s in-house streaming continues steadily. Beta users can now choose between speed or quality via a preference setting, and play with a new mouse emulation mode for controllers.
The mouse emulation sounds like yet more groundwork for the updated Steam controller, and will presumably mean basic couch support for games without controls specifically retuned for Valve’s gamepad.
Elsewhere in this week’s update, Valve have added hardware accelerated encoding via QuickSync – Intel’s video creation-easing processor tech – as well as an option to disable streaming mid-flow, as it were.
The streaming dev team have also introduced a 30 Mbit bandwidth option – and, just in case, a 100 Mbit “unlimited bandwidth” setting for “those who want to live on the edge”.
All of these new choices will be easily accessible by the time we get our hands on them, thanks to a revamped options UI.
Perhaps most importantly, an issue that saw OpenGL games scaled incorrectly when captured has been fixed – so everything we play in this strange streaming future should retain its correct aspect ratio.
Do you think you’ll be an early adopter for in-home streaming? Or are you happy to sit at your desk for the time being?