Facebook is the latest company to try its hand at cloud gaming, but unlike its competition, such as Google, Microsoft, or Amazon, which offer their users cloud gaming services for a certain fee, Facebook went on to launch several cloud-streamed games playable in the Android Facebook app and through the PC web browser.
Not on iOS, though, at least not yet. Jason Rubin, Facebook’s vice president of Play, stated that: “We’re not on iOS right now, which is a big problem for us. We are barred from having Facebook launch the browser and play the game.” Apple has barred cloud gaming services from its mobile app store due to not being able to screen individual games in order to ensure that they are adhering to the company’s policies.
The new service has so far been in a limited beta – with somewhere around 200.000 people testing it – and only available in certain regions, such as California and Texas. The VP also assures that expanding to cloud gaming will result in the development of more complex games for its users and will bring some new features, like player names, avatars, and cross-play support with Cloud and the existing game versions.
So far it looks like Facebook isn’t trying to bring big, exclusive games to its platform, more like add an extension of what is already available: quick games which can be played during idle moments.
The company targets the approximately 380 million people who play games through Facebook every month offering the integration of new cloud games alongside its existing HTML5 games and intends to expand the service and the infrastructure required for more regions in the coming months.
Facebook’s decision to switch to cloud streaming is in line with its strategy in the gaming space over the last few years. In 2018, it launched Facebook Gaming as a new streaming competitor to Twitch and so far it has already proven that it can be one of the most viable streaming services yet, with gamers stating (via Business Insider) that it’s easier to earn more money and more views on Facebook’s streaming platform than on Twitch and YouTube.