Nvidia announced that its GeForce Now software, which was formerly only available on its Shield-branded devices, is now available for PC and Mac users who want the ability to play games on less powerful platforms that don’t have the horsepower required to provide an enjoyable gaming experience.
GeForce Now is an on-demand game service that connects to Nvidia’s cloud-based supercomputers, which render and stream games to your device with up to 1080p resolution at 60 FPS. Previously, this was a subscription-based service costing $8 per month, and it was limited to Nvidia’s library of over 50 popular game titles, some of which include a digital game key for the full version for PC. However, the new version of GeForce Now gives you access to your own personal Steam account, and Nvidia seems to feel that its newfound ability to give Mac and low-end PCs access to quality gaming performance via cloud-based software is worth considerably more money, with the monthly-based subscription evolving to more of an hourly rate.
For $25, you can use GeForce Now to stream to a Mac or low-end PC for up to 20 hours of gameplay. Nvidia feels that this is a reasonable asking price for its service, particularly because it appeals to those who may want to try PC gaming, but have never had a computer with enough horsepower for it. However, longtime PC gamers know better than to put a time limit on their gameplay, and we see this as Nvidia providing customers an incentive (and enticement) to make a larger, more-powerful PC (and thus GPU purchase) over time.
It will be interesting to see how well this works. If you do the math, for the price of an entry-level gaming PC (approximately $800), you get 640 hours (26.66 days straight) of game time with the GeForce Now service. Of course, this time limit is only deducted if you actually play a game, but how many of us have left our screens, with a game running, mid game? We can see this getting costly in the long term.
The new GeForce Now software and service will be available in March.