AMD is helping Microsoft and Sony build technology that will define the PlayStation 5 and the next Xbox. In a new interview with AMD President and CEO Lisa Su, these next-generation consoles are briefly discussed.
"We're working with both Sony and Microsoft on consoles," Su remarked. "They both have their specific secret sauce that we're helping them do." So what is the secret sauce that will define the next generation of gaming for Xbox and PlayStation? I think that Su gives us a few clues in the interview, whether she intended to or not.
You'll notice, when you watch the entire interview, that whenever Su starts talking about gaming specifically, she also brings cloud computing into the picture. "Think about gaming," she says around the 3:35 mark. "Double digit growth, right? Whether you're talking about game consoles, or you're talking about PC gaming, or you're talking about cloud gaming... All of these markets like higher computing power, and that's a great place for us to be."
Again around the 8:20 mark, Su mentions cloud gaming when discussing AMD's partnership with Microsoft. "We're partnered with them in game consoles. I think we have a vision of where cloud computing is going; we're working closely with them."
Does this sound familiar? During Microsoft's Xbox E3 stage presentation, Phil Spencer made a big deal about the future of cloud gaming. He envisions a future where you can play any of your games on any Xbox-Live-connected device. "Our cloud engineers are building a game streaming network to unlock console gaming on any device," he said. My bet is that AMD is helping Microsoft — and Sony — make that happen.
We've already seen companies like Capcom and SEGA branch out with mainstream cloud gaming. Nintendo Switch owners in Japan can play Resident Evil 7 on their Nintendo Switch, straight from the cloud, and SEGA published a cloud version of its popular online RPG Phantasy Star Online 2 for the Nintendo Switch.
Most recently, Ubisoft revealed that it's bringing Assassins' Creed Odyssey to Nintendo Switch in Japan via the cloud. As more AAA publishers explore bringing their games to more devices via the cloud, I think it's a safe bet to assume that we'll see hardware-level integration in the future to make this more viable.
What this means is that PlayStation and Xbox could offer an incredibly affordable box next generation, something in the ballpark of $200-300, that is capable of playing games at their very highest settings, provided your internet connection and ping are healthy enough. Cloud gaming could be the future, and AMD seems to be on the bleeding edge of that future in the console space.