Nvidia GeForce Now Streams Games To Macs And Low-Power PCs

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.

Derek Forrest
Derek Forrest is a Contributing Writer for Tom's Hardware US. He writes hardware news and reviews gaming desktops and laptops.
  • nikolajj
    I would love to use this like Steam-In-Home streaming.
    Perhaps even streaming over the internet from personal pc to personal pc.
    With that, I don't have to add non-Steam games to Steam, and can use my GeForce GPU at a friend's place via my laptop. Should not give too much latency or artifacts with decent wired connections at both places.
  • old_newbie
    $25 for 20 hours is NOT going to go over well.....
  • Druidsmark
    I was interested until Nvidia said $25 us for 20 hrs, as soon as I read this I lost all interest in the product, as it is cheaper to build my own gaming pc in the long run.
  • Groza Adrian
    Streaming 1080p60 fps and low latency is also very limiting,since such content requires a very high bandwidth internet subscription,and,for latency,one that has a fttb/ftth backbone.Running this over DSL is a nightmare.
  • bloodroses
    Pay per hour service? Talk about trying to rip people off. What is this, late 90s where AOL would charge per hour for their online usage? Yeesh...

    There's a reason why I've been turning away from Nvidia more and more...
  • realnoize
    I don't understand this. This, to me, looks like the stuff a typical clueless business analyst might come up with by simply looking at charts and stats. "Millions of PCs that aren't game ready would SURELY mean many people willing to pay a high price for such a service, right?"

    And if I understand correctly, this mean you PAY $25 for 20 hours of playtime on titles you ALREADY PAID FOR?

    For a company that makes GPUs, Nvidia doesn't seem to understand that most people interested in playing graphically intensive games on PC already have, to a varying degree, the hardware it takes to do so. So that leaves the more "casual" players as a target for this initiative, and I question the interest of the average casual player in playing these type of games. I mean, do you know many casual gamers who'll buy a game they don't have the hardware to play it on, and then willing to pay an additionnal hourly fee to play the game they bought?

    And let's assume for a minute that there's a financial element here. Would this be a substitute to someone with not enough money to buy a gaming PC? Given that to get a good experience, you'd need a very good (and probably expensive) internet connection anyways, and at least a low-power PC or Mac (why do you have a Mac if you have no money???), and given the fact that many games are also available on consoles (which are much more affordable than a gaming PC), why on earth would someone that understands the value of money would pay for such a service?

    I'm sure for some specific people in some particular situation, it could be an attractive solution. But these people would be your ONLY clients. You can't be profitable with such a small effective target market.

    Unless there's something I really don't understand here.
  • cobra5000
    Thanks Nvidia, I'd love to have to pay to play the games I've already paid for. In case you didn't realize, Simply having a Steam account and an older PC hooked up to my TV, has allowed me to do this, for FREE, for over two years. FREE!
  • tanjo
    Could be usable for gaming on the go... if you can circumvent your ISPs bandwidth capping, ignore network latency, how fugly the graphics is if Nvidia limits per user GPU performance, etc.
  • DocBones
    I dont get this, I can do this for free with my Mac and Steam already. Have been doing that for years.
    Better video generally means more data which in turn requires a fat pipe that costs more money. Am I missing something?