Nvidia’s GeForce Now game streaming service has launched for the Chrome web browser and M1 Macs in beta (via XDA-Developers), bringing resource intensive games to laptops and other devices that might not have been powerful to run them on their own. We just tested out the Chrome browser version on a Mac and a Windows 10 PC, and it seems to be running smoothly.
GeForce Now already had applications for Windows 10 and Android devices, but expanded to an even wider audience with a beta launch for Chromebooks in August of 2020, and followed it up by beating Stadia to iOS devices with a web app workaround that lets you stream games through the Safari web browser there.
Now, theoretically anyone with a Chrome browser can start streaming by heading GeForce Now’s site and creating an account, even on a weak laptop. Or, if you’re on a new M1 Mac, according to release notes for this new version of GeForce Now, through a new dedicated application. Nvidia’s changelog also lists a few other changes to make the service more useful in a browser, like the ability to create dedicated shortcuts for your games and a new way to share links that can send your friend directly to a game.
Like Google Stadia and Amazon Luna, GeForce Now is essentially a PC in the cloud that you “rent” to stream your games. You can play with a mouse and keyboard, a gamepad, even a wireless headset — all of them worked for us seamlessly in Chrome. It is worth noting Microsoft Edge isn’t currently supported, even though it’s a Chromium browser now. Of course, you’ll need to be in a region where GeForce Now is available.
GeForce Now’s expansion hasn’t been all sunshine and roses. The service has Steam integration, so you can unlock PC games you might already own to stream via the service, but not all games work because developers have to opt-in. Many of them weren’t too happy with Nvidia because GeForce Now let players stream their games without permission (and let Nvidia profit off a monthly membership). And though its rival Google Stadia has a smaller library of even more tightly curated games, it can often offer a clearer picture and higher resolution than Nvidia does right now.