Cloud gaming: Operator propositions + monetisation analysis

Gaming is a multi-billion dollar business – but operators have not really aimed to monetise it. Until now. Cloud gaming relies on a network’s ability to deliver a stable throughput and a low and stable latency. Gaming devices no longer need to have muscles; the rendering happens in powerful cloud servers. With cloud gaming, operators have the possibility to be relevant for gamers; operators can use network features to control and improve the gaming experience. Perhaps operators can even sell cloud gaming with differentiated experience tiers?

Softbank’s cloud gaming proposition, GeForce NOW Powered by Softbank, in Japan

Cloud gaming is developing fast and to understand the present state, Tefficient scanned key markets and leading operators globally to see which cloud gaming propositions they offer to their 5G, fixed broadband and FMC customers.

What monetisation options are generally at hand – and how frequently are they used in practice? What’s most common – e.g. stand-alone, add-on or bundled with connectivity plans? Are there operators that use multiple options in parallel?

With whom have operators partnered? Does the partner choice affect how an operator’s cloud gaming service is sold? How frequent is it to have market exclusivity? If operators need to compete with their partner (if it sells directly to consumers too) – how do operators then differentiate?

How frequent is it to zero-rate the mobile data that a cloud gaming service consumes? How many operators are providing cloud gaming with a service-based fee, i.e. including the mobile data consumed? Are there operators out there that already sell cloud gaming with QoS or priority tiers?

What has the take-up been?

In this project we summarised operators’ cloud gaming propositions from key markets globally, conceptualised it and identified global trends.

Commissioned by an operator group.