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Alibaba goes head-on against Tencent in cloud gaming

Alibaba Cloud has released it first cloud platform and version 1.0 platform-as-a-service (PaaS) for developers that will enable them to offer more services for gamers, a move that will boost mobile gaming and eSports.

The move pits Alibaba, China’s biggest cloud services provider, in direct competition with Tencent, the world’s largest game publisher.

Cloud gaming is expected to grow substantially with the launch of 5G networks across the country. The cloud plays an important role in providing a seamless and direct gameplay experience to gamers from around the world, regardless of the devices they use.

Since 2018, Alibaba Cloud has been building an ecosystem of mobile gaming distributors between China and Japan, the Middle East, Europe and the US.

The industry has also been boosted by people staying home more during the coronavirus pandemic. Games revenue across all platforms in China was 30% higher in the first quarter of 2020 than the same period last year, according to Niko Partners.

Alibaba developed its first mobile game in 2014 and the company’s Romance of the Three Kingdom Strategy Edition is now the sixth most popular game worldwide, ahead of Niantic’s Pokemon Go, and behind Tencent’s PUBG Mobile and Honour of Kings in terms of revenue.

On the back end, Alibaba can offer infrastructure services and cloud application services. Cloud infrastructure consists of network hardware and cloud storage servers. In all streaming services, viewers connect to cloud servers, which serve as storage units for media content and web-based applications. 

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