Amazon is introducing a new streaming option to its Luna cloud gaming site, capping resolution at 720p to boost stability for players on slower internet connections.
Luna currently only streams in 1080p, with 4K arriving at some stage in the future. Even at 1080p, internet connections that fail to keep up with cloud gaming's high bandwidth demands may cause the player to experience latency, lag, and audio issues while using a service like Luna.Amazon now says that anyone using Luna in its early access beta — the software has yet to be released to the general public — will use 720p streaming mode in the settings panel to improve performance.
According to the company, in a statement to The Verge, the ability to play at lower resolutions to balance specific internet access rates and bandwidth demands is one of the most requested features. “As of today, we are enabling a new 720p alternative, which allows for reduced bandwidth and data consumption by streaming at a lower resolution.”Amazon also claims that the lower-resolution environment for Luna would benefit those who have home internet data limits, such as those announced by Comcast in July.
Luna, which was launched in early access last fall, has a specific channel model that borrows cable and streaming television ideas. Rather than paying a fee to use the service, as with Nvidia GeForce Now, or purchasing the games outright, as with Google Stadia, Luna is free to use, but access to streamed games is limited to "channels" with individual monthly subscriptions. Right now, the only two options are Amazon's Luna Plus channel ($5.99 a month) and a dedicated Ubisoft channel ($14.99).