Hands on with Samsung Gaming Hub: How game streaming works on Samsung TVs - MrLiambi's blog


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Monday 4 July 2022

Hands on with Samsung Gaming Hub: How game streaming works on Samsung TVs

Samsung announced and released its new Gaming Hub pretty swiftly at the very end of June 2022, avoiding the sort of long wait that we sometimes experience for interesting new features.

It means that anyone with a 2022 Samsung TV can now take advantage of some swish gaming features - we've got all the key details for you below, along with our impressions from using it.

What is Samsung Gaming Hub?

Samsung has gone big with Gaming Hub - rather than simply a new app for your TV, it's a whole new section, accessed from the system menu where you select your inputs. This means it actually hosts multiple apps, and can act as a homepage for all your gaming needs.

Samsung says that 65 per cent of its customers have a games console hooked up to their Samsung TV, so it makes sense to add one place to host all those connections.

The big addition, though, is a range of streaming apps from the likes of Xbox and Google Stadia, to let you play a range of games without needing any console in the first place. You can access each of these through the Samsung Gaming Hub before signing in and gaming away, all through the cloud.

How does Samsung Gaming Hub work?

Once you navigate to the Gaming Hub on your TV or monitor, you'll find yourself presented with a list of game suggestions based on what you've played recently and what you might like to try. You can connect a controller via Bluetooth and put your TV remote down at this point.

These will range across the services you have access to, and suggest specific games within those libraries. Below them, you'll have the ability to access each streaming service's own app, and further down there are curated lists according to genre or other criteria.

It means you basically have a catalogue of the games available to you, plus the services they run on. Opening any game or app up will let you log into the relevant service to prove you have your membership (the first time, at least), after which you can load into the game.

What services are on Samsung Gaming Hub?

There are four big services on Samsung Gaming Hub right now - Xbox, Stadia, Nvidia GeForce Now and Utomik.

Each lets you stream a different catalogue of games to your TV with slightly different settings and benchmarks, plus diverging libraries, and you can try them out if you haven't experienced them before.

What TVs is Samsung Gaming Hub on?

For now, Samsung has only put the Gaming Hub on its 2022 smart TVs, meaning the QN900B, QN800B, QN95B, QN90B and Q60B lineup.

Samsung indicated to us during our hands-on that it's looking into bringing the streaming options to older models, but that's not something it's guaranteeing at this stage, so the simplest way to guarantee you can access it is to pick up one of the models above.

We'll keep the list above updated as it expands, but Samsung's own page detailing Gaming Hub will also have all the details moving forward.

Is Samsung Gaming Hub good?

The good news from our hands-on time with Samsung Gaming Hub is that it seems to basically do exactly what it says on the tin - you can access streaming services and, provided your internet is up to the task, they work as well as they should.

We played a bunch of Halo Infinite through Xbox Cloud Gaming and were impressed by how low the controller input latency was, effectively making it the same to play as on a console. The only major drawback is that you're limited to 1080p for now, something that you can detect if you're used to an Xbox Series X.

That resolution limit will go up in time, though, according to Xbox, so things should only get better from here.

Connecting your controller is nice and easy via Bluetooth, and you can also use non-Xbox controllers like Sony's DualSense according to your taste. From there you just pick your game, wait while it loads, and then start playing.

You can do so using a wired connection or on Wi-Fi, although wired will always give more stable results to reduce the risk of artefacts and occasional lag spikes, but either way if you've got somewhere between 10 and 20Mbps of speed you should find you can game.

If you've got a Bluetooth headset you can also connect it for audio, which is great, although for now your microphone will go unused. While you can access social features like on any other device, Samsung and Xbox are still working on letting you chat to your mates. You'll hear their voices, but your own will be muted unless you use another bit of kit like the Xbox app on your smartphone.

For a first go, we're very impressed by how smoothly Gaming Hub works, and if you have a compatible TV then you should check it out - you might find yourself on the bleeding edge of gaming progress without having to buy a single bit of extra kit.

Source : https://www.pocket-lint.com/tv/news/samsung/161723-samsung-gaming-hub-details-features-streaming-xbox-game-pass

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