HTC is reportedly investing in OnLive, a U.S.-based online gaming service. According to a filing placed with the Taiwan Stock Exchange, the mobile handset manufacturer intends to purchase 5.33 million shares in OnLive. Each share is available for $7.50 each and the total transaction could cost an estimated $40 million USD. This investment comes hot on the heels of announcement that HTC invested in UK mobile platform firm Saffron Digital. Saffron specializes in the cloud-based delivery of multimedia content to mobile phones and the Taiwanese company may be looking to tap this company’s expertise.
Similarly, HTC may be looking to buy a stake in OnLive and use the service for distributed gaming on its handsets. OnLive is a cloud-based gaming platform that lets you play games online with minimal hardware. The server processes game content on a remote server and sends the compressed information to your home or, in HTC’s case, possibly to a phone o tablet. The online gaming service has the support of several big name game developers including Atari, Ubisoft, Take-Two, THQ, Eidos Interactive, and more.
Unlike Microsoft and Sony Ericsson which can leverage the success of the Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3, HTC has no ties to a gaming platform. An association with OnLive could potentially allow the Taiwanese company to add a gaming component to its suite of services available on its Android smartphones. It would also make a nice addition to the company’s upcoming Flyer tablet.