Could the days of cloud gaming service OnLive be numbered? It’s too early to know for sure, but according to a report by Mashable posted earlier today, OnLive has laid off its entire work force.
According to a source close to the situation, the company called an all hands meeting at 10am PDT, at which the entire staff was fired. Some staffers may be rehired as the company transitions to its next unknown iteration.
That doesn’t exactly bode well.
In a related story, however, TechCrunch chimes in, “We reached out to OnLive’s head of Corporate Communications who promptly replied: The OnLive service is not shutting down.”
Nothing appears out of the ordinary on the OnLive website right now. If there really is no one left to maintain the service, though, that may not last long.
OnLive premiered as a free service a couple of years back before going on to charge users a $9.99 monthly fee for access. The subscription gets you unlimited access to a library of over 200 games, including many triple-A titles, which are playable on PCs, Macs, tablets, and TVs. OnLive sells a $99.99 breakout box for TV connectivity. Since the service is cloud-based, users can play instantly without having to download anything. The fact that games are streamed does add some extra latency, though.
OnLive isn’t without competitors. In early July, Sony moved to acquire rival cloud gaming service Gaikai for $380 million. Sony said the acquisition will allow it to “deliver a world-class cloud-streaming service that allows users to instantly enjoy a broad array of content . . . anytime, anywhere on a variety of internet-connected devices.”
Update 3:15 PM: OnLive spokesman Brian Jaquet has told Forbes, “We are not going out of business.”
Update 3:38 PM: Kotaku now reports that OnLive has filed for “an alternative to bankruptcy called an Assignment for the Benefit of Creditors, or ABC, in the state of California.” Reportedly, a new company will replace the existing one, and a “subset of employees” will be brought back.