Shadow finally comes out of the shadows. After financial difficulties that led to the sale of the start-up last year, a new chapter of the PC in the cloud is now opening under the leadership of Octave Klaba, the founder of OVH. Shadow will finally meet the most pressing demand of players, as well as expand to a new audience.
More power for € 14.99/month more
Shadow’s initial promise was to allow gamers to stream all of their PC games – a promise that was kept – but also to gradually improve the computer made available in the cloud. At this point, however, the configuration has hardly changed since 2016.
This will eventually evolve in the coming months. As the new CEO Éric Sèle had outlined, the basic configuration will remain the same at €29.99/month (4-core Intel Xeon CPU, GTX 1080 GPU, 12 GB RAM, 256 GB storage), but a “Power Option” will be offered become.
For an additional €14.99/month, ie €45/month in total, we have:
- an AMD Epyc 7543P processor with 4 cores / 8 threads, a recent CPU for servers that should very economically replace the aging Xeon E5-2667 v4
- 16GB RAM
- and a GeForce RTX 3070, or an equivalent Nvidia professional graphics card or an AMD RDNA 2 card designed for the cloud, such as the Radeon Pro V620
The supplied graphics card depends on the data center to which the subscriber is linked. The details are not yet there, according to the regions. The Power option won’t inflate the storage capacity, which is a shame given the small amount of space available by default. Players for whom the basic 256 GB is not enough will have to add € 2.99/month for an additional 256 GB (within the 2 TB limit).
The Power option will be available for pre-order this summer and will be available to everyone this fall. Early access will be available to some users soon, and it will be possible to register to be notified of the launch of pre-orders. The design of the applications will also be revised, with an interface overhaul that will provide ” an even more intuitive and responsive experience †
At $45/month, Shadow with the Power option is over three times the price of Xbox Game Pass Ultimate (with over 100 cloud games) and over twice the price of GeForce Now with an RTX 3080, which casual gamers should keep away from this offer. Nevertheless, the French service maintains the argument of the entire PC accessible in the cloud, with the advantages this brings: you can install any game, take advantage of advanced features, access from your Apple TV (the App Store is almost excluded from access to “pure” cloud gaming services) and why not use it for something other than playing.
New services to reach new audiences
In this regard, the possibility of making Shadow something other than a slot machine has not escaped the attention of the new management, who are officially launching Shadow Business Solutions. These are offers for professionals to use Shadow as a work machine. This gives independent professionals access to an individual cloud PC, while companies can request a custom configuration.
Shadow is intended for professionals who require a lot of computing power, such as 3D designers, architects and engineers. Bandai Namco recently entered into a technology partnership with Shadow in this direction. All of Elden Ring’s European previews were created using the French company’s dedicated B2B virtual machines.
In addition, an online storage service is in preparation. It is called Shadow Drive and is produced in collaboration with Nextcloud, an open source sharing platform. This spiritual successor to hubiC will receive 20 GB of free storage space. The premium version with 2 TB costs € 8.99 per month. A beta version will launch this summer and the service will be officially available in Europe this fall.
Finally, Shadow will be exported to new countries this fall, including Canada and Austria. Other countries will be announced in the coming months.