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Microsoft and Sony Announce Partnership to Explore Cloud Gaming and Content Streaming Solutions - VGChartz
Microsoft and Sony Announce Partnership to Explore Cloud Gaming and Content Streaming Solutions

Microsoft and Sony Announce Partnership to Explore Cloud Gaming and Content Streaming Solutions - News

by Adam Cartwright , posted on 17 May 2019 / 2,347 Views

In a press release, Microsoft have announced a new partnership with Sony on "new innovations to enhance customer experiences in their direct-to-consumer entertainment platforms". It marks the first time the two companies have collaborated so closely in the gaming sphere.

 

Read the full press release below:

 

TOKYO and REDMOND, Wash. — May 16, 2019 — Sony Corporation (Sony) and Microsoft Corp. (Microsoft) announced on Thursday that the two companies will partner on new innovations to enhance customer experiences in their direct-to-consumer entertainment platforms and AI solutions.

Under the memorandum of understanding signed by the parties, the two companies will explore joint development of future cloud solutions in Microsoft Azure to support their respective game and content-streaming services. In addition, the two companies will explore the use of current Microsoft Azure datacenter-based solutions for Sony’s game and content-streaming services. By working together, the companies aim to deliver more enhanced entertainment experiences for their worldwide customers. These efforts will also include building better development platforms for the content creator community.

As part of the memorandum of understanding, Sony and Microsoft will also explore collaboration in the areas of semiconductors and AI. For semiconductors, this includes potential joint development of new intelligent image sensor solutions. By integrating Sony’s cutting-edge image sensors with Microsoft’s Azure AI technology in a hybrid manner across cloud and edge, as well as solutions that leverage Sony’s semiconductors and Microsoft cloud technology, the companies aim to provide enhanced capabilities for enterprise customers. In terms of AI, the parties will explore incorporation of Microsoft’s advanced AI platform and tools in Sony consumer products, to provide highly intuitive and user-friendly AI experiences.

“Sony is a creative entertainment company with a solid foundation of technology. We collaborate closely with a multitude of content creators that capture the imagination of people around the world, and through our cutting-edge technology, we provide the tools to bring their dreams and vision to reality,” said Kenichiro Yoshida, president and CEO of Sony. “PlayStation® itself came about through the integration of creativity and technology. Our mission is to seamlessly evolve this platform as one that continues to deliver the best and most immersive entertainment experiences, together with a cloud environment that ensures the best possible experience, anytime, anywhere. For many years, Microsoft has been a key business partner for us, though of course the two companies have also been competing in some areas. I believe that our joint development of future cloud solutions will contribute greatly to the advancement of interactive content. Additionally, I hope that in the areas of semiconductors and AI, leveraging each company’s cutting-edge technology in a mutually complementary way will lead to the creation of new value for society.”

“Sony has always been a leader in both entertainment and technology, and the collaboration we announced today builds on this history of innovation,” said Satya Nadella, CEO of Microsoft. “Our partnership brings the power of Azure and Azure AI to Sony to deliver new gaming and entertainment experiences for customers.”

Going forward, the two companies will share additional information when available.


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13 Comments

Mr Puggsly (on 17 May 2019)

Very curious to see what this means. Will they combine their games on the same service? I think this is also good news for the future of crossplay. We've gone from people assuming/hoping MS will leave gaming, to MS partnering with Sony and Nintendo while expanding Xbox at the same time.


hush404 (on 17 May 2019)

I'd say from the wording, this is more about Sony as a company using Microsoft's tech (outside of their xbox brand) to deliver content. Microsoft does storage and server tech on a way bigger scale than they do anything in gaming. I also predict that this may be yet another step in Microsoft's departure from gaming hardware as they move into gaming services.


  • +8
Mr Puggsly (on 18 May 2019)

Well here's a question, how many units does Xbox need to sell annually to stay viable? I would guess 5+ million a year. I mean that's a large audience to sell games and subscription services to. That assures AAA games can still sell millions of units on Xbox, while Xbox gaming revenue can come from Windows Store/Steam, streaming and occasional ports on competing platforms.

Hence, console sales can stay viable enough to continue while additional revenue comes from numerous other platforms.


  • 0
hush404 (on 18 May 2019)

@MrP - I don't know what their financials are, so I'd only be speculating. Lots of factors to consider I suppose: How much they're spending on R&D for that system and future systems, marketing and service upgrades, how much XBL and game sales bring into that equation and so on. They're likely not losing money, but if you look at Microsoft as of late, their strength seems to be in their tech. They're putting a lot of weight behind the xbox games on PC initiative and blending the world of xbox games with that of other platforms (Windows for sure, but also with moves like Xbox game pass for Switch). Where Microsoft (outside of gaming but also in) already has a mammoth infrastructure and network of technology for cloud computing it's easy to see them wanting to merge into the developing world of games as a service. They're primed and ready to support that and likely see a much greater return there than they do trying to match expensive hardware with competitors generation after generation.

This said, I do agree with you that it's likely not a massive number that they need to keep (especially this late in the generation) going in regards to new console sales to make the platform still viable and I feel like as much as people like to spell doom and gloom, consoles are still here to stay for a while yet (though, their core might change a bit).


  • 0
Mr Puggsly (on 19 May 2019)

I agree with much of what you say, but the era of expensive hardware has pretty much ended. Hardware is sold at little if any loss, which has certainly lowered the stakes of being in the hardware market. They boast about cutting edge tech, but its the best tech they can sell that's affordable to the masses and with little loss.

Maybe Xbox console sales stay steady next gen thanks to all the new developers, that would certainly keep the brand viable. While a new significant revenue are likely to come from pushing Xbox games on other platforms. They've actually become serious about PC support, streaming is growing and MS is already making money on other platforms. I see all of this as good for Xbox as a whole.


  • 0
hush404 (on 19 May 2019)

@MR P - Strong is the company/companies that adapts to the ever changing landscape. I believe the next coming generation might be one of, if not, the last where packing a ton of power into a box is a strategy. With what Google is prepping, with streaming getting to the point where it's not an encumbrance to deal with, I think we'll See the big players (Sony/Microsoft, Nintendo) move further into being a service provider and cheaper streaming boxes that do not need a ton of power to deliver a decent experience. Heck, look at phones rocking near exact versions of popular titles like fornight. That to me is proof that the lines are blurring about what the general public thinks about hardware specs.

I think the reason Microsoft is once again putting weight into their PC effort is that they are realizing that the future is not stuck on one piece of hardware, but is about providing an experience/platform that people want to gravitate.


  • 0
Azzanation (on 20 May 2019)

Just to interrupt. Software sold on other platforms such as PC and Switch earn the Xbox devision money which helps them stay afloat and helps profits the buisness.

So lets say Minecraft sold 5m Units on Switch, all the profits made goes straight into Xbox Game Studios which pays off the R n D etc for there consoles. Software makes more money than Hardware so by increasing your avenues and audience increases your overall income which translates into clearing debts and expenses.


  • +1
sethnintendo (on 17 May 2019)

Nadella looks kind of creepy.


Mr Puggsly (on 17 May 2019)

He's like a hipster Ghandi.


  • +2
sethnintendo (on 17 May 2019)

He does look like a hipster Ghandi. Nice one


  • 0
KLAMarine (on 17 May 2019)

Let us not forget of competition. Hopefully Google gives them a good challenge.


Mr Puggsly (on 17 May 2019)

This doesn't end competition. I mean we have consoles, mobile devices are closing the gap with consoles in many ways, PC is still a big market world wide and now streaming is really getting off the ground. That's just platform, there is also plenty of competition when it comes to software.


  • +4
Azzanation (on 17 May 2019)

We need to see more of this in the industry, hopefully Nintendo jumps on board next. Next gen is looking very promising.