The latest rumored dates for the Playstation 4 to receive Gaikai streaming support are 2014 for North America and 2015 for Europe, according to “inside sources“. Sony’s cloud streaming tech is supposed to enter beta testing early next year before being officially rolled out in the US later that year, with Europe to follow.
The game streaming service will in effect give the PS4 backwards compatibility support by streaming PS3 (and other) games from the cloud directly to your PS4. Microsoft is also considering a similar cloud service to enable backwards compatibility for the Xbox One.
Just how relevant backwards compatibility for the Playstation 4 will be in late 2014 we’re not exactly sure. It will certainly be a nice feature, but over time as more and more of us upgrade our current-gen systems to the next-gen PS4 (or Xbox One for that matter) the ability to play older generation games loses its appeal.
We also understand however that Sony plan to eventually use Gaikai to enable game playing on devices that are not even, strictly speaking, designed to play games. Given that with Gaikai all processing operations occur in the cloud, it’s not impossible to see this sort of technology arriving some time in the future.