Saturday, April 4, 2015

Save SL Go!

Most of us get into Second Life using a computer, usually a pretty powerful one.  But there are ways to use a mobile device -- a tablet or a smartphone -- to get into SL.  There's a text-only app, Pocket Metaverse, for the iPhone.  For Android devices, there is Mobile Grid Client, another text-only app, and Lumiya, which gives you a rudimentary graphics interface.

Last year, OnLive provided "SL Go."  This subscription service uses OnLive's servers to provide the graphics muscle needed to run a fully-realized version of SL on machines that don't have the performance necessary to run a "regular" Second Life viewer.  An unlimited subscription costs $9.95 per month.  It works with iPads and with Android-based tablets and smartphones.

But Sony has acquired OnLive, and last week they announced that SL Go would be closing at the end of April.

If you would like to contribute your voice to try and reverse this decision, there is a petition you can sign.  Go to this link and let your voice be heard!  Frankly, there's not much chance of success, but it would be a shame for us to lose this way of letting people visit our virtual world.

If you haven't tried SL Go, you still have a few weeks.  It's free to use until the closing date of April 30.


  1. The reality is, Sony don't need to burden themselves attempting to pick-up and run any of OnLive's services, be it CloudLift, OnLive Desktop, PlayPack or SL Go, nor have they attempted to do so. They didn't actually "acquire" OnLive.

    What they have actually done is purchase the 1,00+ patents OnLive have that allows them to deliver game titles in a streamed format. Something which could in theory allow them to expend their own PlayStation-based streaming service (launched in January) a lot faster than might have otherwise been the case.

    As Dennis Harper, the SL Go Product Manager at OnLive said, this is akin to Sony buying the heart and lungs of OnLive's services without actually acquiring the services themselves.

  2. Blep... the reference to patents should read 100+.

  3. Quite correct, Inara. Sony bought the patents and proceeded to eviscerate any possible competition. Why couldn't they just purchase a license and leave OnLive in peace? I'm never buying another Sony product if I can avoid it.

    1. I don't know if "eviscerate" is an appropriate term, since it implies there is competition already in place whose current operation will be damaged by this. I think "prevent" might be more apt. Acquiring exclusive rights to tech patents like these is only smart business practice on the part of Sony.

      I have not seen the exact details of the acquisition, but I imagine, like so many of these things it essentially went like this:

      Sony: "We'd like to buy all of your stuff. Would you accept piles and piles of money for it?"

      Onlive: "Well, let us think. . . Yes. Yes, as a matter of fact, we would."

      If there is any real blame to be assigned here, it is the fault of the OnLive folks, not Sony. OnLive could have been altruistic and decided not to sell. But in their place, I think I would have done the same.

      And lets face it, no matter how much some of us love it, Second Life is a tiny sliver of the gaming population. (And yes, SL is not a game, but you know what I mean) For Sony to continue SL Go would probably be far more trouble than it is worth. So we can all rally around the SL flag and sign useless petitions, then pout when they live up to their potential. Or we can just sigh and get on with things.