Online gaming continues to increase in popularity, and network connectivity is integral to esports today. There are currently over two billion gamers out there, around half a million of whom spend hours streaming and watching international online gaming competitions.

Internet Speed is important to have a fluent game session but is not the only thing. Learn what gamers need here

Gaming is now more social and complex than it’s ever been, culminating in an industry that’s now worth over a billion dollars. With so many capabilities in esports, from the ability to form large teams and collaborate in developing and executing strategies in real-time to interacting with other players and spectators while streaming, connectivity is necessary to facilitate these interactions.

No Room for Poor Connectivity

Because of the demand for consistently reliable network connectivity, any potential lagging or other lengthier interruptions can be potentially devastating to a match, leaving everyone frustrated and out of a victory. With the advent of VR/AR and 4K streaming, gamers also expect top-quality experiences that networks must be able to accommodate.

Dependable network connections aren’t limited to console and PC gaming, either. Mobile gaming also relies on consistently strong network connections, with many mobile games consisting of the same massive multiplayer environments found on other platforms. Many mobile games are also cross-platform, meaning that players’ accounts and experiences are expected to be consistent across all platforms from smartphones to PCs to consoles.

What Gaming Needs from Today’s Networks

The future of gaming’s evolution depends largely on network capabilities. The network has been vital to not only the gaming industry and multiplayer gaming innovations, but it is also the driver for complementary social interaction and streaming capabilities between gamers and spectators alike. Simply put, the modern gaming world would be impossible without a strong network to keep it going.

However, many people wonder whether today’s networks are actually capable of meeting the requirements that gaming places on them. Gaming will only become even more immersive as time goes on, with more intuitive augmented reality technology, improving graphics, and expanding virtual worlds that all rely on network connectivity for a seamless experience. Both cloud networking and 5G will be the keys to the future of gaming, as esports push toward live experiences on the same scale as the biggest competitions such as the Super Bowl and the World Cup.

One of the ways in which networks can help make gaming a more ubiquitous experience will be through the implementation of cloud gaming platforms such as Microsoft xCloud and Google Stadia, which enable users to stream games via data center video. The only problem is that this method of streaming is more complex than one-way video streaming, requiring instantaneous feedback of every movement players make in real-time. Any lack of feedback in a live gaming environment can ruin the experience, leaving minimal room for error.

It’s not enough to focus on network capacity, either. Networks also need to possess the agility required to scale flexibly during massive gaming events, whether spontaneous or meticulously scheduled, providing an experience that minimizes latency. What that entails is a combination of machine learning, telemetry, and artificial intelligence to determine the type of pressure that a network is experiencing and proactively address any potential issues by reallocating resources.

The Ability to Adapt

Like many other types of technology, network connectivity is moving toward more adaptive capabilities, combining reliable infrastructures with automation to ensure that gaming and other experiences remain consistent for users. Instead of emphasizing capacity and expanding bandwidth, network providers need to make sure that a truly scalable and efficient solution is in place.

Internet Speed is important to have a fluent game session but is not the only thing. Learn what gamers need here

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