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OnLive cloud gaming patent granted

CEO hints he may seek agreements with rivals

Streaming tech firm OnLive has been granted a major patent covering the concept of cloud gaming.

U.S. patent No. 7,849,491 was filed by OnLive founder and CEO Steve Perlman in 2002, and details a system whereby online devices call up games remotely, rather than from a disc or pre-download. The patent also references wireless networking, uncommon in 2002, and the use of a set-top box for the streaming.

Reads the filing, "The present invention provides a system in which video games may be widely distributed and played without the need for multiple platform-specific hardware units or purchase of an optical disk to play a particular video game.

"Individuals receive games and participate in playing video games utilizing a device (e.g., television, PC, set-top box, etc.) equipped to be compatible with a universal game platform architecture."

VentureBeat reports Perlman as electing not to comment on the possibility of bringing legal action against rival cloud gaming services (such as David Perry's Gaikai), but claiming that he has never previously sued over a patent case.

However, Perlman claims to have privately arranged deals regarding his 100-plus patents in the past.

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Alec Meer: A 10-year veteran of scribbling about video games, Alec primarily writes for Rock, Paper, Shotgun, but given any opportunity he will escape his keyboard and mouse ghetto to write about any and all formats.
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