Will 2019 be the year of the cloud PC?
bought a powerful new PC at the end of last year and it only cost me £27! Well, £27 per month, if you’re going to be the stickler for accuracy.
It’s powerful enough to run all the latest games, it doesn’t take up an inch of space in my office and it’s doing no damage whatsoever to my electricity bills (at least, not directly). In fact, it’s not in my house at all.
It sits in a datacentre just outside Paris. I can access my new PC from any old PC because, just like Netflix, my new PC is streamed over the internet. Once it’s running full-screen on my old laptop, it is to all intents and purposes as good as having a new £2,000 PC gracing my office space.
It is the future of computing, I’m sure of it. My new PC came from a company called Shadow(shadow.tech), and that £27 per month buys me a pretty high-end PC with a powerful processor, 12GB of RAM, 256GB of storage and an Nvidia GeForce GTX1080 graphics card.
That spec is regularly upgraded, so you always have the latest hardware, not a computer that’s decaying the moment you get it home.
The graphics card is crucial, because my main computer is a laptop with no dedicated graphics. It’s plenty powerful enough for everything, except 3D games. Instead of going out to buy a desktop PC or an awkward external graphics card to run PC games, I can simply fire up Shadow.
If you’ve got kids or grand children begging you to upgrade their PC to playFortnite, for example, this is a much cheaper way of doing it.
But this Shadow PC offers more than just games.
It’s a full-blown Windows 10 installation, so it can run everything from Word to professional apps such as Adobe Photoshop. If I need to edit a huge photo,I can take advantage of the Shadow’s graphics power and do it in a fraction of the time it would take on my laptop.
Shadow simply runs as an app on any of my current computers. It doesn’t matter how slow or decrepit the old computer is, because all the performance is done at the other end in Paris.
I can play the latest cutting-edge games on along discarded, dust-encrusted six-year-old laptop, and plug in keyboards, printers, disk drives and other devices to use with my Shadow PC –and there’s no noticeable lag.
Of course, you need a fast and stable broadband connection to pull this o
ff – any fibre-grade connection should be fine, but you won’t get a smooth ride on ADSL.
The biggest potential downside is that if your broadband connection goes down, you lose your computer too –but how useful is a regular computer without a broadband connection the
se days anyway?
I’m convinced this is the future of computing, not least because Microsoft has fallen head over heels for cloud computing and the subscription models.
You may already pay a monthly fee for Microsoft Office and other software, so why not wrap it all up in one price and throw in the PC too? I’m so sure I know what I’m talking about that if Microsoft doesn’t launch its own Cloud PC in 2019, I’ll eat my keyboard. 🙂