OnLive Expanding to Tablets and Phones

OnLive is doing it again.

The leaders in cloud gaming have now created an app that allows games to be played on a touch-screen tablet. Previously, there was an app for the iPad which only allowed viewing the OnLive interface. It was good for browsing the available games list or lurking on other games in progress via the Arena. That's great, but nothing beats being able to play your own games.

Soon that dream of playing AAA games on a handheld may be real. OnLive has already released an app for Android and will soon have one for iOS and Amazon's Kindle Fire. Some of the games will be redesigned specifically with touch controls; other games will be able to make use of OnLive's forthcoming Universal Wireless Controller. The new controller looks just like the old one that came with the Microconsole, but it supports Bluetooth and comes with a USB dongle that will allow it to connect to PCs, Macs, some tablets and smarthphones, and some televisions. This will allow you to have the console experience while using whatever display you have in front of you. The new controller will cost $50 and be available on December 9th.

The OnLive streaming technology should work over both Wi-Fi and 3G networks as long as the latency isn't too high. On slower connections the software will adjust and reduce the quality of the images on the fly which shouldn't pose too much of a problem on the smaller, lower-resolutions screens of most mobile devices. Although OnLive also claims that their software won't use as much data watching YouTube videos, people don't routinely watch YouTube videos for 30 minutes at a stretch over a cellular connection. It will be up to the user to manage his 3G data use.