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EA's Project Atlas cloud gaming launches tonight in closed beta

You might try game streaming much sooner than expected.
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You won't have to wait long to try EA's Project Atlas game streaming service -- in fact, you might get to play very shortly. EA has announced a surprise Cloud Gaming Technical Trial that will debut September 10th at 1AM Eastern as a closed beta for some people who've signed up for Community Playtesting. Those who get in will be limited to four games (FIFA 19, Need for Speed Rivals, Titanfall 2 and Unravel), but they'll get to see how Atlas' synced game progression works first-hand. Progress you make while streaming will translate to your games on Origin, no matter what device you're playing on.

In addition to testing this progression, the trial will also gauge how well EA's streaming works in real-life situations where jitter, lag and other obstacles can sour the experience. EA is betting that it can minimize these issues by using Amazon Web Services and the "public cloud" to place servers closer to gamers and improve reliability.

The publisher hasn't said if or when it expects to premiere a full-fledged service. As with rivals like Google Stadia and Microsoft's Project xCloud, EA is dreaming of a day when you can play its games on virtually any device with a screen, whether it's a computer, mobile device or a smart TV. The trial is both a step toward that goal and a peek at the future, even if practical service isn't ready for a long while.

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