OnLive’s chief executive Steve Perlman has told VentureBeat that he has received a “very fundamental” US patent which “covers an important part of the [cloud gaming] system.”
US Patent number 7,849,491, citing Perlman himself as the inventor, is summarised as “Apparatus and method for wireless video gaming.” As we know, however, OnLive is a server-based streaming games service (often called ‘cloud gaming.’)
The patent was originally filed in December 2002, but has just recently been granted. OnLive claims this is just one of hundreds of patents filed worldwide, which cover the technology necessary to host games on remote data servers and allow players to stream the entire title through a broadband connection – without the need for hardware upgrades, discs or even downloads.
This could spell trouble for cloud gaming rivals such as Gaikai, though Perlman would not comment on whether this particular patent could open a door to a lawsuit. Instead, he stated that he’d never sued anyone for patent infringement and has a history of reaching agreements with other companies.