OnLive blog clarifies latency issues outside the testing area

Friday, 22 January 2010 22:49 GMT By Stephany Nunneley


Steve Perlman, CEO of OnLive, has updated the service’s blog explaining how it’s currently being tested.

Apparently, in order to participate in the Beta, you must be in one location, use one ISP and use one specific PC to sign into the service.

Not get a code for the Beta from a “friend of a friend of a friend”.

“If you change any of these factors, OnLive Beta may not even run, or if it does, the lag and/or graphics performance may render games unplayable,” wrote Perlman (via BigDownload).

Testing centers are currently in Dallas, San Fransisco, and Washington DC, and according to Perlman, those over 1,000 miles from a test center will experience latency that’s “too long for fast-action video games’, but post Beta,  OnLive “will adapt to different configurations each time you connect.”

“The reason location is so critical is because of the speed of light. If you are more than 1000 miles from an OnLive data center, then the round trip communications delay (“ping” time) between your home and OnLive will be too long for fast-action video games,” he added.

“As you can see in the above map, OnLive has 3 data centers for its US Beta test, with a blue circle around each showing the 1000-mile range. Your Beta account will only connect to the data center it was originally assigned to. So, if you are assigned to our West Coast data center and then try your Beta account from the Midwest or East Coast, you’ll find the lag impaired to the point where most games are unplayable. And, depending on how your Beta account was configured for the characteristics of your home ISP, you may see degraded image quality or controller/mouse performance on a different ISP.”

Yesterday, a Beta preview was released on PC Perspective which reported some latency issues with the test – however, the reviewer seemed relatively pleased with everything else.

OnLive is expected to launch sometime this quarter.