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GDC 2022: Cloud gaming powered by Anbox Cloud

Simon Fels

on 21 March 2022

This article is more than 2 years old.

At GDC 2022 Arm, Ampere Computing and Canonical will present a live talk accompanied by a cloud gaming demo built on top of Ampere Altra powered servers running Anbox Cloud providing a cloud gaming service visitors can try live in the Arm booth #S756

Anbox Cloud was built use case agnostic, but cloud gaming has always been one of the key reasons that it is in demand — for running Android in the cloud. At its core, Anbox Cloud is built out to scale and have high density to deliver a sustainable and performant cloud gaming service. In 2017, when we started building the software stack, the Arm server ecosystem was in its early days and has grown stronger ever since. With the ongoing investment from Arm and partners like Ampere Computing and NVIDIA, the foundation for an Android-powered cloud gaming streaming service today is more powerful than ever before.

“Arm-based smartphones are now the platform of choice for gamers everywhere, and for developers, the growing availability of Arm-based servers represents a greatly simplified way to develop, deploy, manage and monetize their games,” said Bhumik Patel, director of ecosystem development, Infrastructure Line of Business, Arm. “Our collaboration at GDC 2022 with Canonical Anbox Cloud and Ampere Altra demonstrates how high-end Android cloud game streaming can be brought to mobile gamers with a high-performance, scalable experience.”

Enterprise-grade solution for cloud gaming

Together, this solution brings a high-density and easy-to-manage containerisation platform that helps to minimise the time-to-market and reduce overall costs of deploying and running a cloud gaming service. It reflects Canonical’s deep expertise in cloud-native applications. Combined with the Ubuntu Advantage support program from Canonical, an enterprise can ensure it gets long-term support and security maintenance as needed.

“We have come a long way and always built Anbox Cloud with our customers in mind providing the best software stack possible to allow powering an efficient, cost saving and performant cloud gaming services centred around the Android operating system. Backed by Canonical, the company delivering the Ubuntu operating system, we can not only deliver a strong and powerful software stack but also any other support our customers may need” says Simon Fels, Engineering Manager for Anbox Cloud at Canonical.

Easy-to-use and with NVIDIA GPUs

The demo at GDC 2022 demonstrates how simple building cloud gaming services can be with the technology stack Anbox Cloud provides. In its core, the demo uses the Anbox Cloud Appliance, a small-scale version of the Anbox Cloud software stack, running on an Ampere Altra powered CPU equipped with NVIDIA Tesla T4 GPUs. Anbox Cloud simplifies the orchestration and management of the individual Android instances hosting the actual game workloads and connects users on their mobile devices fluently with the service. The demo also highlights how Arm-based servers are enabling mobile gaming applications to efficiently run natively in mobile phones without the overhead of having to translate instructions to x86.

In its user interface, the demo provides a simple selection of games the user can freely select from and start playing. The Anbox Cloud software takes care of scheduling, launching, and management of the Android instances in the background. From the UI perspective, launching a particular game becomes as simple as sending a single HTTP request to the backend service and integrating with the Anbox Cloud Streaming SDK to connect over WebRTC with the launched Android instance. In the background, Anbox Cloud takes care of automatic container management scheduling, launching, optimization, and a lot more.

Try the demo yourself!

The demo source code is available on Github at and can be used by everyone to replicate and extend the exact same experience as shown at GDC 2022. Only requirement is a commercial subscription for Anbox Cloud itself, which can be easily obtained from the AWS marketplace. The implementation is simplified but showcases the core principles. If you’re curious and want to learn more, please go ahead and try the demo yourself. The Github project contains documentation, detailing all necessary steps from installation to configuration. The small game portfolio the demo provides is built around freely available and open source Android games, and you are free to load your own game titles or otherwise extend the demo project as you like. Pull requests are welcome!

If you’re interested in building your cloud gaming service with Anbox Cloud, come and talk to us.

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