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Sony buys Gaikai cloud gaming service

image captionThe deal should mean a broader catalogue of games available via the PS3.

Sony has confirmed it is acquiring cloud-based gaming service Gaikai.

The Computer Entertainment division of Sony is spending $380m (£242m) to take over the firm which streams games to players.

For its cash Sony will take over the running of Gaikai's data centres and the infrastructure behind its service.

It is thought Sony will use the Gaikai technology to offer a broader portfolio of games to owners of its PlayStation 3 consoles.

Gaikai is one of several online gaming systems that let people play games by streaming the action to a PC. It means players can enjoy speedier access to games because only the part they are currently playing is sent to them. By contrast, when downloading, an entire game must be delivered and installed before it can be played.

In addition, Gaikai's technology also allows gamers to play titles intended for consoles without owning one of the devices.

Details of the deal are scant which led gaming news site MCV to speculate that Sony would use Gaikai to help with a future PlayStation 4 console.

It is not clear what impact the acquisition will have on Samsung's plans to offer gaming via its smart TVs through Gaikai. Samsung announced its deal with Gaikai at the E3 trade show in early June.

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