Most PCs currently in use lack support for modern graphics cards and are unable to run modern games. NVIDIA is trying to address this limitation by expanding its GeForce Now cloud gaming service to Windows PCs. Previously, the service was available only through the Shield TV set-top box.
NVIDIA introduced a new version of GeForce Now at CES 2017, now in its third day in Las Vegas. The game streaming service lets users play any game they’ve purchased from Steam or Origin on any computer. GeForce Now will be available starting at $25 for 20 hours on a GTX 1060 PC, or 10 hours of play on a GTX 1080 machine.
The idea behind GeForce Now is to let gamers play the games they want even without a powerful enough machine. It does this by offloading the processing of games to NVIDIA’s data centers from a computer. NVIDIA upgraded its data centers with the latest Pascal graphics technology to process games in the cloud before transmitting them to your PC over broadband connections. That means you need a fast Internet connection with at least 25 Mbps of speed. Then, you’ll be able to play games like Tomb Raider with high-end graphics, for example, on a PC that’s not really powerful to support the most demanding PC games.
You will also be able to upload games from Steam or Origin to NVIDIA’s cloud, where they will run on servers that use either a GTX 1060 or GTX 1080. Playing games on the NVIDIA cloud will cost you a certain amount of credits on a per-minute basis: Two credits per minute for a GTX 1060 and four credits per minute for the GTX 1080 system.
NVIDIA first introduced GeForce Now in late 2015 as an offshoot of the company’s GRID beta service that was designed to stream high-end games to Shield mobile devices. The game hosting service will be available for free beta testing on NVIDIA’s site beginning in March. It will initially roll out to users in the U.S., while worldwide availability remains unclear right now.