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Microsoft: Streaming tech is 'limited'

UK Xbox boss says server-based gaming future is 'not as close as many believe'

The UK boss of Xbox has labelled streaming technology in games as "limited" - as the firm prepares to go head-to-head with OnLive's Cloud-based system.

Neil Thompson told The Independent today that there was "a way to go" before Triple-A titles could be streamed without any technical disruption - and hinted that Microsoft would be at the forefront when they can.

OnLive claims that its micro-console will allow gamers to play disc-less, streaming versions of the latest games without any lag. The system is due to launch early this year.

"There's limited technology to allow certain game types to be streamed," said Thompson.

"There are lots of 'snacking' games online on our own Xbox Live Arcade today - and I think that area will grow in time.

"But there's a way to go for a full capacity game to be streamed and for that experience to be as rich [as it is on disc] today. It will probably happen. But it's not as close as lot of people would have you believe."

He added: ""Whatever happens in the future, we'll be in the mix and active participants."

Thompson's comments echo the thoughts of Sony's Ray Maguire from last week.